Where will Dwight Howard land next season? Will he erase the memories of a disastrous campaign in Los Angeles and re-sign with the Lakers? Or is a trip to the good ol’ state of Texas on the table? The mystery that swirls around Howard’s thought process throughout free agency is frustrating for fans and teams alike. The latest rumours point to the Houston Rockets as a serious contender, but who really knows (See the Orlando Magic fiasco a few seasons ago)? Honestly, at this point, the only Dwight I want to watch and follow this summer owns a beet farm, but in the interest of my column, I will examine the best-case scenarios for Superman.
The Los Angeles Lakers. This past season wasn’t ideal. The hype was there, but the results weren’t. The Lakers started off the season with a loss and concluded it with a sweep at the hands of rival San Antonio Spurs. Sandwiched in between was an avalanche of injuries to every cornerstone player of the storied franchise. So what do the Lakers have to lure Howard in with? Money. Los Angeles is the only team that can offer him a five-year deal worth nearly $120 million, which is almost $30 million more than any other franchise could propose.
The Houston Rockets. With James Harden openly recruiting D12, the Rockets seem to be a legitimate consideration for Howard. And rightly so. They’re a young team, well-coached and are not under a glaring spotlight like Los Angeles. Houston already boasts an impressive lineup with Harden, Jeremy Lin and Chandler Parsons spearheading a talented offense in need of a physical, All Star-caliber center that can defend the paint while getting buckets on the other end. Add Howard to the mix and the Rockets would be competing in the upper echelons of the Western Conference.
The Dallas Mavericks. After the complete dismantling of their 2011 championship squad, the Mavericks are looking to lure Howard away from Los Angeles with the possibility of also adding another LA star: Chris Paul. Powered by owner Mark Cuban, Dallas can only offer the big man a four-year deal, worth a shade under $90 million, but they are the only team that has the cap space to add another near-max contract player, such as the aforementioned Paul.
The Atlanta Hawks. No way in hell.
So sports fans, brace yourself for the Dwight circus sure to engulf every sports network, but know there is an end in sight. An end that I believe will see Dwight Howard land in the city of Houston.