With all the rumors that have been circling around where Dwight Howard will end up by the trade deadline, things were surprisingly quiet as Orlando hosted the All-Star festivities this weekend. Of course there was the general chatter about whether or not this would be one of the last times Howard played in front of the Orlando crowd, but it didn’t seem like people were tossing trade options around left and right, they just enjoyed the weekend.
Now that the weekend is over, it might be time to get back to business. There’s a few rumors going around that Howard will be dealt on March 1, only a couple days away. It’s still the usual suspects. A lot of trade options involve Los Angeles Lakers center Andrew Bynum or have Howard going to the Nets, but a couple new ideas have surfaced. A third team is being thrown in to the mix, I’ve heard both the Toronto Raptors and the Minnesota Timberwolves want to get involved.
Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM (@MisterRudolph) tweeted that the Magic are going to “aggressively pursue” Steve Nash. That trade probably wouldn’t involve Howard but it could be an attempt at getting him to stay.
According to Peter Vecsey, one thing is for sure, Howard still wants out of Orlando.
“Regardless of speculation and fabrication about additional destinations under consideration, Dwight Howard’s trade request remains unwavering. He is amenable to commit long-term with the Nets, Lakers and Mavericks. That’s it, just those three teams.”
If this is true and Dwight is going to get what he wants, then we can expect to see him on his way out of South Florida this week. This is definitely going to be a huge move, but I’m tired of speculating, let’s just get it over with! I’ve said since before the season started that Howard wouldn’t be finishing this season in a Magic uniform, but I’m ready to find out where his final destination will be so we can move on to the next trading conspiracy.
I’ve always loved Dwight Howard. I think he’s a charismatic guy that you can definitely build a franchise around, but the Magic may have to give up and realize that he’s not their guy anymore. Right now, it’s just a distraction. Howard’s teammates, coaches and everyone else with the organization don’t know if they need to be preparing themselves for life after Superman, or if they should be getting ready to take the big guy with them into the playoffs. It’s a very tough situation to be in, I’m hoping we finally get an answer soon.