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Dwight Howard Needs Lakers As Much As Lakers Need Dwight Howard Reviewed by Momizat on . So Dwight Howard sets his sights on Texas--the perfect choice in a career of looking for love in too many places. Oh, he’s still here? Oh, right, he just starte So Dwight Howard sets his sights on Texas--the perfect choice in a career of looking for love in too many places. Oh, he’s still here? Oh, right, he just starte Rating:
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Dwight Howard Needs Lakers As Much As Lakers Need Dwight Howard

Dwight HowardSo Dwight Howard sets his sights on Texas–the perfect choice in a career of looking for love in too many places.

Oh, he’s still here?

Oh, right, he just started taking presentations, with the huge Rockets’ delegation going first Sunday night at 9 p.m., the moment Dwight officially became a free agent. Of course, the batting order means nothing, which should reassure Laker fans as much as anything Dwight has ever said. Yes, after a two-year vaudeville act of a run-up, in which he messed up every team he played for and tried to go to, he’s free!

Remember when there was no downside to being a free agent?

No less than LeBron James discovered that was no longer true after announcing his decision via ESPN’S TV Special From Hell. If Dwight now looks like he’s leaning toward leaving to observers across the board, there’s one thing he hasn’t figured out. He’s about to go from dufus to outright laughingstock if he bails on the storied Lakers and leaves $30 million on the table without closing in on that elusive title with James Harden and a Rocket team that will have to be reconfigured—Omer Asik, anyone? Or Dirk Nowitzki and whoever’s left after the Mavs dump Shawn Marion, Vince Carter or Roddy Beaubois to max Dwight out.

Dwight being Dwight, he’s not really leaving because of Mike D’Antoni, or Kobe Bryant, or titles, but something far more important to him.

Love.

Dwight didn’t like D’Antoni’s offense, but he didn’t like Stan Van Gundy’s that got him into the playoffs for the first time in his four-year career, either. If Kobe was a tad stern for Dwight’s taste, they worked it out. And forget winning titles, which is what Dwight thinks he wants, even if he’s still looking for that right team, coach and No. 2 option.

—-Want to show off your Kobe love? Check out this VINO t-shirt!—-

Dwight wants to be loved, which, to him, means everyone laughing at his jokes, his Superman schtick, his imitations and understanding if he can’t run run pick-and-rolls with Steve Nash, make free throws or act like he wants to be here from his first Laker press conference.

In other words, he wants to be treated the way he was in Orlando, where, wrote Sentinel columnist Mike Bianchi, fans would snarl if the press said bad things about “our Dwight in shining armor.”

Unfortunately, Dwight didn’t realize what he had. Instead, he did what big guys are supposed to do, become a free agent and watch everyone go into a tizzy trying to win his heart.

The first year of tizzy saw Dwight try to get the Magic to trade him to Brooklyn, then renounced his opt-out clause that would have allowed him to sign with the Nets last summer, then try to persuade the Magic to trade him there anyway.

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers-Press ConferenceYear two brought Dwight to the Lakers, destination of choice for great centers from Wilt (who won one title with them), to Kareem (five), to Shaq (three).

This wasn’t like that. Instead, Dwight painted himself in a corner, turning off Laker fans, so that now he’s reluctant to stay where he’s not loved.

To get the sour grapes off the table, even if the odds against staying seem to be climbing, the Lakers want him back, and should. You win with great players. Plural. For all he lacks tangibly and intangibly, 6-10, 275—pound athletic prodigies don’t grow on trees, and are handy in recruiting more greats.

On the other hand, the Lakers are happy with their fallback position–$55 million in cap room in 2014.

That means no sign-and-trades for players whose contracts go beyond next season, unless they’re big star players. The Lakers will consider S&T’s for comers on the rookie scale, expiring contracts and/or No. 1 pick(s).

So, if Golden State offered rookie Harrison Barnes, second-year Klay Thompson or expiring Andrew Bogut, the Lakers might think about it.

In bad news for Dwight, I think the Warriors would disband first.

Twitterverse faves with the Lakers taking multi-year deals like that of Asik and Jeremy Lin are non-starters.

Howard’s reputation has already taken a hit. The New York Daily News’ Mitch Lawrence just congratulated the Nets on getting Kevin Garnett at 37, noting he’d rather watch KG crawl up the floor than Brooklyn’s original hope, Dwight, do his to-be-or-not-to-be number.

Hopefully, ESPN won’t offer Dwight a 60-minute special to announce he’s taking his talents to Texas.

I take that back. If he’s going, let him go in style.

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About The Author

Mark Heisler, 2006 winner of the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame's Curt Gowdy Award, writes for Sheridanhoops.com, HoopsHype.com, TruthDig.com and Huffingtonpost.com, as well as Lakers Nation. | Follow @MarkHeisler

Number of Entries : 43
  • 3339

    Lakers just need to get rid of dantoni and they easily become the best place for Dwight. houston had a good season last year. Lakers had an awful one, yet the Lakers still finished ahead of them. I don’t see houston being realistic contenders. Lakers will wake up, fix the coaching, and rebuild a champion. Hopefully Dwight is a part of that.

  • jackie

    oh shut up! you people always whine about the lakers coach. We do not need another one. It is not the coaches fault, they lack team work. TEAM WORK! I just hope my Lakers win championship next year. As for Dwight Howard, so eff yourself, we will do good with or without you. Hate when players leave just because of money and never stick with their team

    • zeta

      basically that’s the coaches job to make sure the players plays together…

  • Lyle

    Has anyone ever given a look at former-Nuggets coach George Karl? I think he’s better than D’Antoni. Way better.

  • quickster007

    A Championship coach already know the team that he wants to coach and he knows how to motivate them to play to the next level. When Kobe and Shaq played together Rudy Tomjonavics was the coach He couldn’t get them but the playoff. Phil Jackson took over and champions they became.A Championship coach is different from a playoff coach. Phil jackson is a championship coach but Mike Dantoni is a playoff coach. If Mike Dantoni remains the Lakers coach the Lakers will be nothing but a playoff team.

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