The Orlando Magic are reportedly ready to re-open Dwight Howard trade negotiations, but should we actually care?
According to Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio, Howard’s stance with regard to the Magic has been made abundantly clear and the organization is ready to move on.
With Dwight Howard reiterating his wish to be traded, multiple league sources predict the Orlando Magic will again step up efforts to find their All-Star center a new team.
Several of those sources told FOX Sports Ohio on Saturday they believe Howard could be traded by the end of next week.
Howard has been at the center of trade rumors for the better part of a year. He met with new Magic general manager Rob Hennigan last week, and according to reports, said he would still like to be dealt. Otherwise, Howard reportedly indicated, he will leave via free agency at the end of the 2012-13 season.
While some sources said the Magic could possibly hold on to Howard until the February trading deadline, the majority seem to think the team will again try working the phones to see what develops.
As with all things Dwight Howard, this latest development must be taken with a grain salt, a shot of whiskey and a healthy dose of skepticism.
Of course Howard isn’t going to remain with the Magic past next season, he’s burnt too many bridges. But we’ve known this, the Magic have known this and yet, here we are, nearly 18 months into the Dwightmare and he’s still in Orlando.
This latest report changes nothing and subsequently, means nothing, unless Howard is, in fact, traded by the end of the week. But with both the Brooklyn Nets—after re-signing Kris Humphries and Brook Lopez—and the Houston Rockets—courtesy of Omer Asik’s and Jeremy Lin’s lucrative deals—both out of the immediate running, pulling the trigger on a Howard deal becomes maniacally complicated, even more so than usual.
We know Howard has an affinity for the Dirk Nowitzki-led Dallas Mavericks, but they don’t have the necessary assets to pull off a deal of this magnitude. The Atlanta Hawks arguably do, but a small market team like them is likely to be scared off by the fact that Howard won’t sign a long term extension upon his arrival.
That leaves the Los Angeles Lakers and all their glory. But even they, the richest team in the NBA, aren’t about to give up an arm and a leg for Howard only to allow him to “explore his options” next summer.
So in reality, where does that leave us?
Three blocks past nowhere, exactly where we’ve been for the better part of two years. A dark horse team may emerge to land Howard’s services, but such deals are hardly ever constructed and executed on the fly.
This soap opera is going to take even more time to resolve itself. As much as we’d like to believe in the latest report, we can’t, because we’ve been exposed to this saga long enough to know better.
Howard will wind up somewhere other than Orlando, that much you can bank on. But that somewhere will not actualize itself today, tomorrow or even the next day. It probably won’t even actualize itself by next month.
Until we have some concrete information—in the form of a pending trade itself—we must go with what we know.
And what we know is that come hell or high-water, Howard will not be a member of the Magic after this upcoming season, no sooner, no later.
Unless we witness otherwise.
Dan Favale is a firm believer in the three-pointer as well as the notion that defense doesn’t always win championships. His musings can be found at Bleacherreport.com in addition to TheHoopDoctors.com. Follow @danfavale on Twitter for his latest posts and all things NBA.