After the Los Angeles Lakers traded for center Dwight Howard last offseason, sources close to the situation are now saying that there is little chance that he will re-sign with the team this summer. Even though the Lakers can pay him $30 million more than any other team, Howard is willing to leave the cash behind to play in a system that is better suited to his skill set, ESPN reported. Howard has a problem with the system used by Lakers’ coach Mike D'Antoni and he also did not particularly enjoy playing a support role alongside team leader Kobe Bryant.
The Lakers can offer Howard a five-year, $118 million contract, while other teams can pay him only $88 million over four years.
Howard has already scheduled meetings with Dallas, Houston and Atlanta but will also at least meet with the Lakers. This is probably not the last update about this story as Howard is notorious for being indecisive. Before finally being dealt from his first team, the Orlando Magic, Howard repeatedly asked the organization to trade him and then curiously decided to opt-in to the final year of his contract during midseason.
Although they were not originally thought to be in the hunt to land Howard, Dallas is emerging as the favorite to land the big man. If the Mavericks are able to clear enough cap space to offer him a max deal by shedding Shawn Marion's $9 million expiring contract, Howard could likely end up in Texas.
Howard apparently likes the idea of being the top superstar of a franchise and thinks that because Dirk Nowitzki is aging, Dallas would be viewed as his team. Dallas will also have a good deal of cap space next summer which the organization could theoretically use to build a championship roster around Howard.