After playing eight seasons for the Orlando Magic, Dwight Howard has been traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. The trade had been rumored since yesterday became a reality on Friday. The trade involved The Lakers, Magic, Nuggets and 76ers. The Lakers ended up with Howard and sent Andrew Bynum to the 76ers who also recieved Jason Richardson from the Magic. The Nuggest landed Andre Iguodala from the 76ers while the Magic received Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic, Moe Harkless, three 1st round picks and a second round pick for 2013. It was the mega trade we had been expecting almost the entire summer.
Dwight Howard is leaving Orlando as a villain. He skipped out on a charity event recently in Orlando, that wasn’t going to win him any fans. Howard has been playing hardball with the team since the season ended. Yet the team still tried anything they could to make him happy enough to stay. The Magic fired coach Stan Van Gundy in May and the previous GM to appease Howard. Howard did not care he still wanted to leave as a free agent. The Magic had been that road before with Shaq in 1996 and were not about to let that happen this time around.
When trade rumors started Howard demanded going to the Brooklyn Nets and nowhere else. Howard put the team in a rough situation by lowering his trade value. He stated that he would not resign with any team other than the Nets or Mavericks when his contract is up after this season. A lot of interested teams quickly ran away not wanting to lose a lot for a one year stand with Dwight. Luckily for the Magic they were able to put together a deal that they can build a team for the future with. The team is ready to get on with life and with Dwight Howard out of the picture will be able to.
Dwight Howards legacy with the Magic will be a tarnished one. A story of feuding with his coach, stirring up trouble for the team and alienating himself from the fans of Orlando. The City of Orlando had been waiting for a star when they drafted Dwight in 2004. The team wanted to win a championship with Howard and the closest they came was the 2009 NBA Finals. The Lakers squashed the Magic in that year and the team never returned to the championship game since. The Magic should have realized earlier that Howard was not the man that could take them to a title.
Howard is now officially the most hated man in the NBA and it will not change anytime soon. He cares not about the team but himself. Howard has made his bed and no he has to sleep in it. Good riddance Dwight Howard.