Where will Dwight Howard end up?

Posted: 01/18/2012 by levcohen in Basketball
Tags: , ,

Where will Dwight Howard go? That question has been on a lot of people’s minds since the NBA Lockout. The center of the Orlando Magic has stated publicly that he wants a trade, although his play on court has not been effected. According to Howard, there are only 5 teams that he would sign a long-term deal with: The Magic, New Jersey Nets, Dallas Mavericks, LA Lakers, and, most recently, LA Clippers (although he has denied adding the Clips to his list). I’m going to look into some trade/FA possibilities:

Orlando Magic: The Magic have started out quickly, and may decide not to trade Howard. If he has a great year, and they go deep into the playoffs, he may be open to resigning with the Magic. This would obviously be the simple option, but it isn’t all that likely to happen.

New Jersey Nets: Before the season, the Nets were rumored to have aggressively pursued Howard before the season. They offered talented center Brook Lopez (in three season in the NBA, he has averaged 17 points, 8 rebounds, and 1.5 blocks), and a lot of draft picks. They reportedly offered Lopez and 4-5 first round picks for Howard. That is a huge amount of talent, but it is worth it for the Nets, who would have all-star PG Deron Williams to go along with Howard, who has won 3 straight defensive player of the year awards. However, the two teams couldn’t agree on a deal, and shortly before the year broke a bone in his right foot. He is expected to miss the first month and a half of the year. Without Lopez, the Nets have struggled, going 3-11 to start the year. This deal is by no means dead though. The Nets aren’t the front runners for Dwight, but are pretty close, and should continue to pursue the big man.

Dallas Mavericks: While the Mavs aren’t likely to trade for Dwight Howard, there have been rumors that they can add Dwight and Deron Williams in free agency. Williams is a Dallas native, and Howard has stated that he would love to play in the big D. The Mavericks won’t be able to trade for Howard, because they don’t have enough good players signed past this year to get the job done. To free up enough money to pick up Howard and Williams, the Mavs will have to let Lamar Odom go (not a big deal considering his play this year), and use the amnesty clause on Brendan Haywood or Shaun Marion. Considering that Haywood would be Howard’s backup, he is the more likely candidate. Assuming all this happens, and the two stars agree to go to Dallas for less, and SG Jason Terry agrees to go back for much less, the Mavs potential starting lineup would look like this:
PG: Deron Williams

SG: Jason Terry

SF: Waiver Wire filler

PF: Dirk Nowitzki

C: Dwight Howard

I would take this lineup over the Heat’s big 3 any day of the week. Of course, Terry might not want to come back, but it would still be a very potent lineup. It seems like it is getting more likely.

Los Angeles Lakers: The Magic apparently want Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum to trade Howard, but that isn’t likely to happen. Let’s look at two potential trades, (including one with three teams):
Trade 1:

Lakers get: Hedu Turkoglu (big contract, not good trade value, Magic want to trade him) and Dwight Howard

Magic get: Andrew Bynum, Matt Barnes, and a first round pick

this trade is pretty straight forward, with the Magic getting Bynum, a talented C, Matt Barnes, an SF who has shown some skill, and the pick. The Lakers would get Howard and a contributing piece in Turkoglu

Trade 2:
Lakers get: Dwight Howard and Luis Scola

Rockets get: Pau Gasol, Matt Barnes, Hedu Turkoglu

Magic get: Kevin Martin, Andrew Bynum

This one is very intriguing and interesting, in part because the Rockets and Lakers were part of the infamous 3 way trade which netted Chris Paul for the Lakers that was vetoed by David Stern. In that deal, the Rockets were getting Gasol, so they have interest in him. The Magic are getting a great deal here, and the Lakers should be fine with this. The Rockets probably get the short end of the stick, but it could be worth it for Gasol.


LA Clippers: A Blake Griffin and 1 first round pick for Dwight makes sense here. For the Magic, it is great, because Griffin is a young stud under team control, and the pick is always good to have. For the Clips, it’s just as good. They need help defensively, and get it with Howard. Howard is a step up on Griffin in all phases of the game, it seems.

  1. sonicsfan says:

    Quite enjoy the blog. I’d like to see a post on the amazing improvement in Spencer Hawes. (Although, is he injured? I have noticed that he is missing from some recent 76ers box scores.) You might want to check out http://www.wagesofwins.com for NBA quantitative analysis. http://www.82games.com is good also. For some posts on the recent Pineda for Montero trade, you might look at some of Dave Cameron’s stuff on http://www.fangraphs.com Keep up the good work!

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