The Orlando Magic will not trade Dwight Howard before the start of the 2012-13 NBA season.
They will not move him to the Los Angeles Lakers, Brooklyn Nets, Houston Rockets or any other team that has been mentioned as a possible option.
It’s time to drop this ridiculous charade. Plain and simple: Dwight is staying put.
Over the first few weeks of free agency, various reports made it seem as though Orlando dealing Howard quickly was inevitable. Initially it was a matter of weeks. Then it was a matter of days. Then hours. And yet, when it was all said and done, nothing happened.
At the beginning it sort of made sense that they would rush to move Howard because, really, what could Magic brass have possibly gained from keeping him around? Dude was/is a cancer. It just seemed like it would have been in Orlando's best interest to ship their disgruntled center out of town and start anew. And it’s not like any of their potential trade partners would have been able to up their proposals, seeing as the Nets were already basically offering their entire team, the Lakers were already offering Andrew Bynum, and the Rockets were already offering everything on the roster plus whatever was in their refrigerators.
Howard getting traded ASAP seemed like the most reasonable take on what was happening, but it obviously wasn’t.
Soon enough, Brooklyn grew tired of Orlando’s games and made two big moves: 1.) they traded for Joe Johnson and, 2.) they re-signed Brook Lopez. That second move was particularly consequential because it ensured that their team was out of the Dwight Howard Sweepstakes until January.
With Brooklyn out of the equation, the Lakers suddenly became the new favorites to acquire Howard. He had seemingly warmed up to the idea of signing an extension with L.A. (according to some reports, at least), and the Cleveland Cavaliers appeared more or less willing to facilitate a three-team deal.
But then Orlando stalled. And then Orlando stalled some more. And then…well, seeing as Howard is still a member of the Magic, you can probably guess what happened.
Last week, there was a report that trade talks had been reinitiated and that a Howard deal may go down within days.
It didn’t, of course.
Today, L.A. sports guy Joe McDonnell took to his podcast to discuss this whole mess. Here is the gist of what he said, via Twitter must-follow @drewunga (seriously, if you don't follow him, don't even bother calling yourself a Lakers fan):
Joe McDonnell uses his podcast to update on Dwight Howard and the Lakers. Says his source has never been wrong : bit.ly/Mu1ajR— Andrew Ungvari (@DrewUnga) August 7, 2012
— Andrew Ungvari (@DrewUnga) August 7, 2012
@mikeelliscope Third team needed. Orlando's owner still bitter about Shaq. They don't want Bynum. Good chance DH starts season in Orlando.
So, again – Howard will not get moved before the start of next season. Plus, most likely, he won’t get moved to the Lakers. Mitch Kupchak won’t offer anything in the future that he's not offering now, and clearly Orlando isn't interested in what's being offered now.
It is what it is.