LOS ANGELES — It’s true, yes it’s true, the saga is finally over. The Los Angeles Lakers have acquired another franchise center, their second from the Orlando Magic. On Thursday, August 9th 2012 the Lakers reached an agreement to acquire Dwight Howard from the Magic in a four-team, eight-player, multi-draft pick deal. The Philadelphia 76ers will obtain Andrew Bynum.
The deal also has the Denver Nuggets sending forward Al Harrington and guard Arron Afflalo to the Magic, and the 76ers will ship small forward Andre Iguodala to Denver. Other parts of the deal include the Magic sending guard Jason Richardson to the 76ers, who are sending center Nikola Vucevic and first-round draft pick Mo Harkless to Orlando. All three teams – Philadelphia, Denver, and Los Angeles - will send the Magic protected first-round draft picks.
The NBA still has to approve the deal so hopefully David Stern won’t pull another Chris Paul on the Lakers this off-season.
Assuming this deal is approved, this changes the landscape of the Western Conference. The Lakers are the big winners in the deal and with the addition of Steve Nash this off-season, Los Angeles now has a big three of their own. The key factor for the Lakers may be the fact that they were able to keep Pau Gasol, who will serve as one of the best fourth options in the NBA. With a front line of Howard, Gasol, Ron Artest (yes, I’m calling him Artest) and Antawn Jamison coming off the bench, the Lakers will have one of the deadliest front lines in the NBA and their backcourt isn’t half bad, either. Most fans are already salivating at the thought of an east coast-west coast big three vs. big three NBA Finals match-up next year. It should make for an exciting 2012-13 NBA season.