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Warriors’ owner says team was ‘a lot closer than people realize’ to landing Dwight Howard in free agency

Oct 4, 2013, 12:19 AM EDT

Newly signed Houston Rockets player Dwight Howard during news conference in Houston Reuters

Before ultimately deciding to sign with the Rockets, Dwight Howard met with four other teams in free agency — the Lakers, the Mavericks, the Hawks, and the Warriors.

No one on the outside truly believed that Howard would end up anywhere but Houston or Los Angeles, and Golden State especially appeared to be a long shot considering that they would need to clear salary cap space in order to sign Howard to the maximum contract he would require.

But Warriors owner Joe Lacob says the Warriors were truly in the mix, and were much closer to landing Howard than most realize.

From Sean Deveney of Sporting News:

“I don’t like to focus on those who aren’t here,” Lacob told SN as part of an exclusive conversation this week. “Good luck in Houston, Mr. Howard. And I am sure he will help that team, they will be better. But we would not have gone after him if we didn’t think we had a chance or that it made sense. … We were a lot closer than people realize to perhaps that actually happening, (Howard) coming here. I think that is a testament to what is happening here. He was affected by the presentation that he saw by our ownership and our management.”

Believe what you want, and obviously Lacob was in the room with Howard and we weren’t. It just doesn’t seem like the Warriors could have pulled it off, even if Howard had indeed decided that he wanted to spend the next five years in the Bay area.

But the fact that we’re even talking about it speaks volumes as to where the franchise is now, and in that sense Lacob is absolutely right.

  1. lakerade - Oct 4, 2013 at 12:32 AM

    Totally agree. I’ve been saying the Warriors came up short this offseason, with The Logo on board you know the goal was Iggy AND Howard.

  2. spyder9669 - Oct 4, 2013 at 5:06 AM

    The Warriors would have set themselves back YEARS by landing Dwight. They would have had to dump David Lee Harrison Barnes AND Klay Thompson. Thats why he didn’t go there. A big 3 of Dwight Curry Igoudala is nowhere near as good as the currently constructed lineup.

    • cmehustle - Oct 4, 2013 at 5:19 PM

      Barnes and Thompson dont make anything. The needed to clear Bogut and David Lee, Im sure they could have found takers for those guys. The Lakers would (should have) took either one. Barnes and Thompson along with Howard and Curry would have been an excellent squad.

  3. Anoesis - Oct 4, 2013 at 7:46 AM

    “No one on the outside truly believed that Howard would end up anywhere but Houston or Los Angeles…”

    As soon as Howard started talking about listening to other teams’ offers I was convinced he wouldn’t sign with L.A., and I’m sure I’m not the only Laker fan who felt that way. The signs were there all season long for anyone willing to see them. Howard merely confirmed the suspicions when he started meeting with other teams.

  4. ProBasketballPundit - Oct 4, 2013 at 3:24 PM

    Congrats, Warriors owners, you were closer than anyone realized to making the biggest mistake of your life.

  5. skinsfanwill - Oct 4, 2013 at 4:22 PM

    I really like this Golden state team. they don’t need Howard with a healthy Bogut coming back. Why ruin the chemistry, give away future potential, and deal with the circus that is Howard. Now get that guy Kent Bazemore some additional playing time please so he can wow some folks. This team is deep in my opinion.

  6. cmehustle - Oct 4, 2013 at 5:20 PM

    What he really means is they were a lot closer than the Lakers to landing Dwight Howard….

  7. lemfax - Oct 5, 2013 at 9:51 AM

    New news for Howard again….

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