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Howard says it was “very tough” to play with Kobe, but that’s not why he left L.A.

Jul 15, 2013, 1:52 PM EDT

Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard AP

Lakers fans don’t want to hear this, but Dwight Howard handled the mechanics of his free agency pretty well. He met with teams but relatively quietly, not with media really camped outside the meetings. He made his decision quickly. He called the teams personally to inform them. Word leaked out faster than he and his team wanted (they should have been prepared for that) but there was no PR disaster of a television announcement.

However a lot of fans — as well as players such as new Clipper Jared Dudley — want to know why he really left Los Angeles. Because his explanation that it was a number of factors may be true but doesn’t mesh with our desire for one simple, clean reason.

Simple reasons such as he didn’t like playing with Kobe Bryant. Stephen A. Smith asked him about that as part of a lengthy interview with Howard on ESPN’s SportsCenter.

“Was it tough playing with Kobe? Yea, it was very tough. But playing along with Kobe didn’t have any parts of my decision going to Houston. I just felt like Houston was a better situation for me and my career. Me and Kobe, we had our disagreements, we had our moments. Everybody knows Kobe likes to score and there were times we would get at it getting the ball. And that happens on a team. ”

Howard went on to say he has to blame himself for letting the relationship get that way, for not demanding the ball with his play. Which is all true.

So Kobe played no part? Sure.

Kobe was one of those many factors for Howard — he wants a team that he feels is his and as long as Kobe pulls on a Lakers jersey that will be his team, his locker room. Howard could have tried to grab the reins of the team with his play, but he wasn’t up to the task both physically and in terms of maturity..

What I hear was the biggest factor was not Kobe however: The Rockets with Howard are contenders (they have to mesh, roster tweaks will be needed, but they are in the conversation now). The Lakers have the cap space to rebuild this team into a contender around Howard next summer, but he didn’t fully trust that management could pull that off. He knew what he was getting in Houston.

In the end, if Howard fights through the eventual adversity and wins a ring or rings with James Harden in Houston then he can easily justify his choice. He doesn’t win and that weighs on his legacy. He has to do it and do it in Houston. This was his choice of landing spots, there is no forcing your way out of the situation if you don’t like it. He has to just win now. It’s on him.

  1. jetslakersfan - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    Yeah he didn’t like the way Kobe wants to win rings. Howard stop trying to full everybody u want the spot light on u. It not about rings to u.

    • boltokmymaster - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:38 PM

      Yeah Howard, you aint fulling me.

    • sire2334 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:27 PM

      I’m not trying to stick up for Howard as he’s immature. But maybe, just maybe, Kobe IS a d…

      I just don’t get Lakers fans…Oh nevermind. Your username says it all.

      • spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:12 PM

        @sire
        We don’t get you either and personally. I don’t care too. I’m Just Saying!!!

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:44 PM

        Sorry, meant to say “be amnestied”.

      • zelaya322 - Jul 16, 2013 at 3:56 PM

        Maybe, just maybe Dwight Howard wants a team handed to him on a silver platter. Did you not pay attention to what happened in Orlando? You know who else was a D*** and had a bunch of rings?

      • dbaldwin215 - Jul 16, 2013 at 4:50 PM

        It’s only because Howard is black that this is making headlines, if he were white no one would even care. That is the truth, fact!

  2. spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:18 PM

    I’m gonna call PETA and file a report against PBT.com. Ya’ll are beating this horse to DEATH!!! Who care’s why he left. The bottom line is that HE LEFT!!! As a Laker fan, I am sick of hearing about him. He moved on, so WE moved on!!

    • logisticalvoices - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:36 PM

      You moved on…which is why you clicked the link, read the article, and commented on it.

      • spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:07 PM

        @logistic
        So because I commented on it, Im not over it??? Thanks for letting me know my own feeling’s on the subject and clarifying that for me. I didn’t know that you were a “Troll” with magical powers. Keep up the good work!!!

    • 00maltliquor - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:52 PM

      I LOL’d @ that PETA line pretty hard

      • spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:22 PM

        @Malt
        LLS!!! I’m SOOOOOOO over this Dwight story Bruh. It’s last weeks news!!!

  3. losangelesfan - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:25 PM

    I pray to all that is holy that this is the last time I read ‘Dwight Howard’ and ‘Lakers’ in a headline. Please.

    • badintent - Jul 16, 2013 at 1:49 AM

      Ah no. If Lakers have poor start or are in the middle of the pack you will hear this all season. “Jimmy Buss blew another huge chance to keep Lakers in the hunt by Letting Howard walk.” Laker Fans will demonstrate outside Staples at both Laker and Clipper games (TV coverage is the same ) for Jimmy to resign. If Rockets have great start and season, you hear that headline all season long too.My I suggest industrial strength ear plugs.

    • wsuperman4445 - Jul 16, 2013 at 5:58 AM

      @ losangelsfan: “I pray to all that is holy that this is the last time I read ‘Dwight Howard’ and ‘Lakers’ in a headline. Please.”
      Hum! now where do I remember that comment? Oh yea I said that last year when the Dwightmare train was leaving my city Orlando! hey laker fans hows that rolling circus treatin you? I’m just sayin!

  4. BigBeachBall - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:28 PM

    Here we go….

  5. jetslakersfan - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:29 PM

    Losanglesfan

    Sorry but this won’t be the last time u read Howard and Lakers in headlines. Another will be Lakers win another ring Howard still searching for his first.

    • spursareold - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:50 PM

      LOL. Lakers ain’t winning anything any time soon.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:47 PM

        Anyone remember this same comment being made back in ’04- ’07? Or even ’99 and ’00 maybe? I sure do. The outlook wasn’t great back then either.

      • 3xchamps - Jul 15, 2013 at 6:15 PM

        why do people try to make laker fans feel bad when the lakers dont win or when theres a down period for them? im a laker fan and it doesnt faze me. this is a winning franchise and they will eventually win it again.

  6. pmx8411 - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:30 PM

    Dwight is so SOFT omg…

  7. daddyb1gdrawz - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:44 PM

    The media has turned Dwight Howard into a punching bag. Howard earned the right to go where ever he wanted; and he did. Good for him. Kobe just wants that last ring and it kills him that he will not get it before he retires. It is somewhat selfish on Kobe’s part in that he is so abrasive that it interferes with player relationships.

    • therealhtj - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:10 PM

      Doesn’t want it bad enough to give up any money.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:31 PM

        We’ll see if he actually does give up money – most people know he will. Ever done any negotiating in any big transaction? Usually you start higher than what you expect to get out of the deal.

      • spursareold - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:53 PM

        If you were to negotiate like Kobe has so far if you were buying a house, you’d never get a counter-offer. Ridiculous for him to even SAY that he wants to continue at his current salary. That’s more than half the cap for a team that needs to rebuild next year. With Nash and cap holds, they won’t be able to sign a MAX player.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:54 PM

        And the fact that he said it means he should receive some criticism. No denying that. But he’s Kobe and he’s polarizing. This is one of those instances where he could have said something different so that people would like him a little more.

        We’ll see what he ends up taking as a salary though. That will be more telling.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 6:00 PM

        I think Kobe signs on at around $12 mil per year, similar to Duncan’s contract. Nash might not even be around still depending on how he plays this season. The will be able to sign two max contracts next summer, unless they pull off a trade with some of their expiring contracts before then.

      • themars211 - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:52 PM

        Did anybody listen to the comment when it was made. He was actually saying it in jest. Plus people keep talking about giving up money. In the statement you are making a big deal about he said that the Union would frown upon any athlete that talks about taking less money in contract for the benefit of the team. Its bad for other athletes that are trying to maximize there earning potential……smdh

  8. money2long - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:48 PM

    http://25.media.tumblr.com/b6444a7b87515fe9a933eaf0ae13f4ed/tumblr_mphsnxXoI91qzb7vjo1_500.gif

    • money2long - Jul 15, 2013 at 2:59 PM

      GIF

    • 00maltliquor - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:56 PM

      LMAO!!

    • loungefly74 - Jul 16, 2013 at 12:34 AM

      Jack…telling it like it is…

  9. divan22 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:10 PM

    When LeBron went to Miami, the Big 3 all decided to sacrifice for the betterment of the team.

    When Dwight went to LA, Kobe immediately reminded us all that it was still “his team” and he proceeded to chuck up more than 10 shots PER GAME than Dwight!

    Kobe = 20.4 FGA/game
    Dwight PLUS Pau = 22.5 FGA/game

    Gee, I wonder why the Heat succeeded and the Lakers failed!

    • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:41 PM

      Any idea how many FGA Kobe averaged when Shaq was still on the team dominating from 2000-2003? Right about the same. Didn’t seem to prevent Shaq from doing his thing.

      If you think that’s the reason the Lakers failed and the Heat won you didn’t watch a lot of the games when the Lakers were down by 10-15 points in the first half with Kobe doing everything he could to feed the ball into the post and it not working well. That’s not why the Lakers failed and the Heat succeeded – how about the perimeter speed and defense, the bench talent, the field goal percentage of everyone outside of Kobe and Howard (and I’m not talking free throws). Some of us actually watched what happened and saw that the team wasn’t going to work, not because of Kobe’s FGA, but because of several factors that were more of a problem than him shooting too much. Many of the games were going to be lost if he didn’t do as much as he did.

      • spursareold - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:55 PM

        Kobe was a better player then, not a fading star with a major injury rehab in front of him. His lack of lift when he returns is going to shock your socks off.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:22 PM

        spursareold, not sure I understand what you’re getting at… your point, valid as it might be, doesn’t seem to make much sense as it relates to what I said above, or even what divan22 was talking about. Did you mean to reply to another post?

        Kobe had one of his best all around seasons of his career this past season – racking up double digit assists several times, being the assist leader on his team much of the time. He was a better PG than Nash often. Yet, he’s still criticized for his FGA, even though it was the same in his championship years with Shaq, yet lower than MJ’s in his championship years even when MJ’s teammates had far better shooting percentages… the criticisms seem a little unfair. Only thing that makes sense is that he’s a polarizing person and some people will simply never like the guy. I know that many Lakers fans will give him more credit than he’s due much of the time, but the same can be said of his critics on the flip side.

    • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:56 PM

      Did you know that Jordan took 23 shots per game in 97/98 and had almost an identical FG% as Kobe this year? What a ball hog!!!! That’s not what a championship team does… oh wait, his team won the championship that year? Oh never mind.

      Hey, if 3 star players are willing to take major pay cuts to form a super team, good for them. What can the other GM’s do to compete with that? It’s not like that’s going to be the norm in this new CBA-controlled league. Big money will be hard to come by. Miami’s big 3 won’t be able to keep taking pay cuts like that – I don’t think the player’s union will allow it, as it would drive down the value for all the other players in the league. So when it comes time for raises, Miami will have a difficult time keeping the super team together.

    • spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:57 PM

      @divan
      The Heat success didn’t have ANYTHING to do with them having the best player on the planet @ all did it??? Or the fact that they have a better coach??? Or the fact that they have a MUCH better roster did it?? GTFOH with your meaningless stats. Dwight wasn’t a good fit in L.A. and even if we didn’t have Kobe. Dwight probably still wouldn’t have been a good fit. He is just looking too have fun and we demand a little more from our superstar’s around here!!!

      • divan22 - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:25 PM

        If LeBron and Wade butted heads the way Kobe and Howard did, Miami wouldn’t have won anything.

        If Wade claimed it was still “my team” the way Kobe did, Miami wouldn’t have won anything.

        If LeBron decided to take nearly as many shots as Wade and Bosh COMBINED (like Kobe vs Dwight/Pau), Miami wouldn’t have won anything.

        Hahaha “much better roster”… the Lakers were supposed to be championship contenders with the roster they had. Don’t bash the roster now just because they flopped.

        A lot of things went wrong for the Lakers this year (injuries being the biggest factor, in my opinion), and I didn’t mean to sound like I’m putting it ALL on Kobe. That would be ridiculous.

        But it’s also ridiculous to pretend Kobe deserves zero blame. His admirable desire to win is trumped only by his selfish desire to be “the man”.

        For comparison’s sake…

        Kobe = 20.4 FGA/game at 46.3% shooting
        Dwight + Pau = 22.5 FGA/game

        LeBron = 17.8 FGA/game at 56.5% shooting
        Wade + Bosh = 28.1 FGA/game

      • badintent - Jul 16, 2013 at 2:00 AM

        YOU really mean Eric is coaching the Heat ??. Really ? We all thought it was Riley all the this time. Didn’t we all hear that when Nash and Howard were signed, the Lakers would have a dynasty for the next 5 years. ? LBJ won with a 38 year Allen, an banged up Wade , a Center off the trash pile(Birdman) and Poshy Boshy. Not a great supporting cash.Stop making excuses for Lakers, You guys change coaches like women change panties Mike ,Bernie, a new Mike..Learn from the Heat and the Spurs IT’S A BIG BOY GAME.

    • kb2481 - Jul 16, 2013 at 6:34 AM

      MJ at age 34 FGA/game = 23 and 3.5 assist
      …when chicago win another championschip in 98′

      Howard FGA/game in orlando – between 10 and 13 shoots , in LA-10, so can’t blame Vino for that…he want’s to win, that’s it!

  10. tbutler704 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:21 PM

    Kobe is a winner, Howard is a loser. Lakers are lucky to not be stuck paying him a fortune.

    • divan22 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:32 PM

      Kobe’s a winner when he has the NBA’s best frontcourt on his team.

      Kobe can’t get past the 1st round when he has a mediocre team around him. See 2005-07.

      Like it or not, those are the facts.

      • tbutler704 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:54 PM

        Blah blah blah homie. 5 championship rings, the guy is a winner. Name for me all these teams that won without a group of good players….I’ll wait.

      • asimonetti88 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:03 PM

        I would love to see the player that could win championships with Chris Mihm and Kwame Brown as the starting frontcourt.

      • divan22 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:03 PM

        LeBron and Dwight took mediocre teams to the Finals. LeBron’s never lost in the 1st round.

        Kobe couldn’t get past the 1st round with a mediocre team, and even missed the playoffs once. Then after his 3rd straight failed season (2006-07), he demanded a trade until you guys landed Pau Gasol.

        Again, those are the facts. Dismiss them all you want.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:08 PM

        I think any great shooting guard would have had a tough time getting far with those 2004-07 squads. That was a pretty bad team with Rudy T and Hamblen running the show. Not much talent on the floor outside of Kobe. Phil helped out but couldn’t work miracles until they were able to trade for Pau.

        Having Kobe teamed up with Pau and Bynum (when he wasn’t out injured 3/4 of the time) proved to be a great combo. Funny, I don’t remember critics calling Pau and Bynum the best front court back then – I remember the terms “soft” and “slow” being tossed around. But I guess if it serves to take away from what Bryant has achieved, then they were the best in the league. They’re either garbage when talking about the team’s potential or they’re legends when talking about Kobe’s legacy.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:28 PM

        “LeBron’s never lost in the 1st round.”

        So what? Robert Horry has more rings than Jordan – so what? This is a team game, not horseshoes or golf. People who make statements like this know nothing about basketball or what impact Kobe, LeBron, or any other great player has had on a championship team. I’d question if Jordan could have done well with the team Kobe missed the playoffs with. You guys crack me up.

      • asimonetti88 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:33 PM

        I know they were bad so not many people watched them, but I don’t think people realize the Lakers were starting the likes of Chris Mihm, 40 year old Vlade Divac, Kwame Brown, Smush Parker, Devean George, Luke Walton for full seasons. Tierre Brown, Jumaine Jones, Brian Cook and Mo Evans were considered key bench contributors. As a Lakers fan, those were dark, dark years. The Lakers might not be that good next year, but they are more talented than they ever were in those 3 years.

      • divan22 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:51 PM

        Let’s confirm your claims, asimonetti88.

        First, you claimed the Lakers started a 40-year-old Vlade Divac. False. Vlade appeared in 15 games in his 2nd tour with the Lakers, but never started. He played a TOTAL of 130 minutes in the 2004-05 season then retired.

        You also claimed they started Devean George for “full season(s)”. False. During this time-span (2004-05 through 2006-07), George started exactly 8 games.

        Conveniently enough, you left out Caron Butler and Lamar Odom. They were the 2nd and 3rd best players on the Lakers during that 2004-05 season. They each averaged over 15 PPG that year.

        The result: 34-48 record, no playoffs.

        Yes, those were dark years for the Lakers, for 2 reasons: 1) Kobe’s supporting cast was pretty weak, and 2) Kobe’s not good enough (or selfless enough) to carry a mediocre team to contention.

        That’s reality. And I’m really not a Lakers/Kobe hater. Kobe’s one of the best players I’ve ever seen personally and I’ll brag about watching him to my grandkids someday.

      • dudermcrbohan - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:53 PM

        oh please. I hate the Lakers, but in terms of competitiveness, the difference between the western conference and eastern conference is huge. lebron and dwight wouldn’t have fared any better in the first round if they were in kobe’s situation and you know it.

      • asimonetti88 - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:58 PM

        Caron Butler was a decent player for the Lakers, but nothing special. He offered the Lakers some points but not much else. Odom was playing out of position for much of the time until 2006 or 2007, playing the small forward position in the year under Rudy Tomjanovich and Frank Hamblen, which was a terrible, terrible fit. I was surprised when I looked up the statistics and it did not list any starts for Vlade, but I remember Vlade beginning the season as the starting center until injuries hit him. Mihm started for several years as well. He started out ok but injuries also limited his effectiveness.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:08 PM

        “Yes, those were dark years for the Lakers, for 2 reasons: 1) Kobe’s supporting cast was pretty weak, and 2) Kobe’s not good enough (or selfless enough) to carry a mediocre team to contention.”

        Let’s keep in mind that the year they missed the playoffs, Kobe was in a completely new system. All he knew was the triangle. Could he have tried to be more like a PG than a SG who is relied upon to score? Sure he could have. But he was learning what it was like to carry the entire load for the team in a free system. It’s no wonder he went on a shooting spree. But except for one of those seasons where he had 27 FGA per game, he’s still averaged less shots per game than Jordan did in his reign, with almost exactly the same number of assists per game as Jordan in his prime.

        So if the numbers were so similar, how is it that Kobe should take the blame for the team missing the playoffs or not being contenders? And why is Howard and LeBron given so much of the credit for their teams making it to the Finals and losing? I’d say Howard’s team that went to the Finals (as well as LeBron’s Cleveland team) was far more talented than the teams Kobe was on in 2004-2007, had more stability, and better chemistry with their core players. That was instantly clear when Fisher and Jackson returned. Chemistry, coaching, system, role players, etc – all have just as much role in a team’s success than their star player. Ask any of the greats.

      • elcapitanfiscal - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:19 PM

        Kobe lovers everywhere..damn. He has never carried a team on his pwn..only real bball fans know that..he was the best player on his team for only two of his5 rings..

        Kobe fans are some of the dumbest fans that exist

      • 00maltliquor - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:36 PM

        Kobe haters are some of the dumbest that exist.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:38 PM

        Ahhh, so to be a real basketball fan means you have to dismiss Kobe’s achievements… gotcha. Plenty of you guys out there then.

      • spthegr8 - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:50 PM

        @elcap
        Your a Mav’s fan. What do you know about basketball???? He never carried his team?? GTFOH!!! Do you even watch Laker games?? I’m sure you don’t too busy working your normal 9 to 5…….TROLLING!!!!

      • loungefly74 - Jul 16, 2013 at 12:36 AM

        you are picking and choosing stats….bottom line…Lakers made the Finals 7 times during Kobe’s career. that is the stat that counts.

        Like it or not..those are the facts.

    • 2late2matter - Jul 16, 2013 at 12:15 PM

      Kobe, regardless of the hype and hope, is only one player on the team. Not a magician.

  11. butlers91 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:35 PM

    The dude is nuts. He left Orlando because they didn’t get another big name for him to play with, but yet he cannot share the spotlight.

  12. lawest111 - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:47 PM

    He doesn’t like the coach, he was hurt, he doesn’t want to play with Kobe… The team didn’t defend him when he was hurt. Geez, enough already. Look in the mirror for the explanation not to those around you.

  13. ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 3:53 PM

    Howard left for two main reasons – one the article mentioned. He knows the team is a contender with him there. He didn’t want to wait and see what the Lakers could or could not pull off next summer. Houston as great pieces now. That’s easy to see.

    The second main reason is Howard doesn’t like the constant magnifying glass focusing on his every move and flaw. He hated how he was constantly criticized by the LA media. He knows he’ll get far less of that in Houston. They will cut him more slack than the LA media and he knows it. He might lose out on some of the marketing dollars, but being portrayed in a better light in a more forgiving media market will help his image over the long term, regardless if he’s able to win it all or not.

    Outside of those two main issues, there was also the coaching staff, the system, and then yes, Kobe the hard ass who all put too much pressure on him to play a different way than he wanted to. He wants to be featured in the post. Let’s see if Houston changes what made them so good last year to appease him.

  14. 00maltliquor - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:33 PM

    Kobe’s not the reason you left? KOBE’S NOT THE REASON YOU LEFT DWIGHT!!??

    You have your people ask if the Lakers can amnesty Kobe Bean “Black Mamba” Bryant, they say no, and you promptly tucked tail and your bird as s flew south, BUT KOBE’S NOT THE REASON OR A REASON!??

    Okay, I’ve had just about enough. I’ve given Dwight a ton of slack. I do think he is a genuinely good person and I want (need) him to do good for my sister team the Rockets, but I CAN’T STAND LIARS!

    Stop trying to make people like you Dwight, you big wet, soggy vag’ and man up and own up to it and keep it moving!!

    • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:45 PM

      He also didn’t ask that his old coach Stan be fired. We all know what happened right after he said that.

      • spursareold - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:58 PM

        Yeah, Stan clowned him by telling the press. Dwight then looked like an idiot for coming up and hugging him, unaware that the press knew of his request.

      • 00maltliquor - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:11 PM

        Wish he woulda done that to ‘Antoni before loading up the U-Haul, slapping a “To H-town or bust” sign on the bumper and flipping the bird out the window. Woulda been a great parting gift.

      • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:11 PM

        Someone gave this comment a thumbs down? Why? Dwight publicly lied about not asking Van Gundy to be fired in a press conference. Then Stan told the world that Howard asked that he be fired within an hour (or very soon after). It was comical. How can you give me a thumbs down for that? Everyone saw it. It’s not like I’m lying.

      • sportsfan18 - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:36 PM

        ludachrisgsx

        Sadly, facts don’t matter or carry weight on here, especially this board, the Pro Basketball one.

        We all know women are more emotional, but the fact is that it is mostly men on here and the majority of them let their emotions get in the way of facts.

        Because they like a team or a player, it’s thumbs down even to facts.

        Guys on here whine about things vs. being analytic, non-emotional, using facts etc…

        This will get thumbs down too even though I haven’t mentioned a certain player, team or individual poster either.

        It hits too close to home for way too many on here and they’ll lash out and bitch slap me with their thumb downs.

    • badintent - Jul 16, 2013 at 2:09 AM

      I think Howard has surrounded himself with lots of yes men(agent, manager,gofhers,) who feed him what he thinks he should hear. He’s not a deep thinker and has been pretty much like Shaq was in his early days for practice, conditioning, listening to coaches. The difference is that once Shaq saw the 7 rings that Phil had won for on the Knicks and Bulls, he grew up fast. And got some of his own.

  15. androidgumby - Jul 15, 2013 at 4:41 PM

    The Dwight Howard story is one of many intriguing moves that have gone down so far in the East & West. Lakers are out of the playoff conversation this year and should take Bill Simmon’s advice and start the “Riggin’ for Wiggin’s campaign ASAP (I’m a Laker fan BTW).
    http://www.grantland.com/story/_/id/9466869/lakers
    The 2013-14 NBA season should be very fun to watch on both sides of the river… I can’t wait!

  16. provguard - Jul 15, 2013 at 5:50 PM

    Lakers slowly becoming the 2nd fiddle in LA. Thanks Kobe…

    • ludachrisgsx - Jul 15, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      You mean, thanks Jim Buss. He’s the X-factor in this team’s future, not Kobe.

      If Kobe were the reason Howard decided not to stay I’d say that Howard is not the type of player any team would want to build around. If you can’t work with Kobe to contend for a championship given the chance, you’re probably not mentally strong enough to do much when your team will need you most.

  17. 3xchamps - Jul 15, 2013 at 6:23 PM

    kobe is the batman on that team and will always be. howard wanted to take that from kobe which was stupid. he should have shut up and played the robin role for 2 or 3 years. they may have won at least 1 chip. then kobe, because of age, would probably retire or hand the team to howard. having said that i still dont know if howard could even be that batman. he showed me know skills around the basket this year when he did get the rock

    • 2late2matter - Jul 16, 2013 at 12:25 PM

      Don’t think Howard could stand taking Kobe’s “place” as a big fish in the LA big bowl. There in Houston he can be a (big) little fish in their little bowl until they start winning again.

  18. decimusprime - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:04 PM

    First of all Kobe has more killer instinct and will to win in his torn Achilles then D-Ho has in his whole body. Second, the Lakers will be fine and fighting for 1st in the pac-west within three years.

  19. homegrowntalentmn - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:17 PM

    Nba is full of soft players and kobe is a real man. Howard says Omg I can’t win a championship. I have to team up with another star or 2 other stars but not kobe cause he makes me accountable… I’m glad I’m not a hardcore nba fan cause ya’ll are soft like pu**ies. If you don’t respect kobe then you must not respect MJ

  20. talkingfan - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:31 PM

    D Howard , soft and no heart, lacking what it’ll take to lead a team like the LAKERS. Light shine to bright in LA

  21. mogogo1 - Jul 15, 2013 at 7:45 PM

    Somebody else said it first, but these Lakers discussions mostly totally miss the fact that this is no longer the Lakers we all grew up watching. Buss the Younger is nowhere close to being as smart as his old man. The elder Buss knew how rebuild a team, tweak the roster, when to make moves, and when to be patient and see what happens. Thus far his son’s MO seems to be “if dad did it, I better do the opposite to prove how much smarter I am.” I don’t see them having lots of success under him, at least until he gets humbled pretty severely and hands the reins over to somebody who knows what they’re doing. In fact, I won’t be surprised if Kupchak gets shown the door, either as the fall guy or because he won’t put up with what the son wants to do.

  22. ocgunslinger - Jul 15, 2013 at 9:35 PM

    Jerry Buss was a great owner…..intelligent enough to know that he didn’t know everything and put some great experienced General Management and staffs together. I don’t know if Jim Buss has the same intelligence and I wish his sister was given the reins.

  23. wsuperman4445 - Jul 16, 2013 at 6:37 AM

    Howard will never be the Leader that Kobe, Lebron,MJ are! people might criticize Kobe for his selfishness at times I for one don’t really like him that much but.. I respect his play and his leadership and Proof of that are rings I believe we give Dwight too much press for a person that does not have leadership skills, Likes to have fun as he puts it, not that any of the others don’t. but come on people before you can talk about fun put the work in it and become a leader first. after watching Lebron these last 2 seasons even if you hate or love him you got to respect that killer instinct to win that we have now seen time and time again.. in the beginning it was Wade and Lebron as captains but Lebron has quickly shown through leadership and grit that he has EARNED the right to be Captain of the team. Dwight wants Kobe to just quit after Dwight gets in to LA? don’t think so Dwight would have to earn that right one man with no rings no leadership skills telling another man with 5 rings to pack up his game and go home to retirement? come on people lets get real. and if Dwight thinks that going to Houston and that is his team I am sure that they ( the Rockets ) will say just about anything to land Dwight but after that contract is signed make no mistake that is Hardens team and Dwight is just the an expense part of the supporting cast. Dwight needs to work on his intermediate shooting skills, Free throws and Leader ships skills in tight spots as it relates to his teammates he has a history of throwing people under the bus as a Magic fan I speak from experience.. So, if this is now your team Dwight don’t fire the Coach , work with your teammates, keep your neg thoughts to your self and work on your game. you now have a world class coach a world class trainer, so real good pieces in teammates and a management that states that they will listen.. ( at least for a little while) its now on you besides sticking with my team through rebuilding I will be Watching the Rockets closely to see.. you Win ( at least deep in the finals) or lose.. Prove me wrong Dwight that you are not a loser!

  24. dbaldwin215 - Jul 16, 2013 at 4:49 PM

    It’s only because Howard is black that this is making headlines, if he were white no one would even care. That is the truth, fact!

    • badintent - Jul 17, 2013 at 12:53 AM

      OK, with that logic how do you explain all the media coverage of Justin Beber ??? Your race card is worn out, get a new one.

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