It’s Not "Rocket" Science -- Dwight Howard will not play for Los Angeles Lakers Next Season

By Eric N. Ellington
USA Today – Kirby Lee

Dwight Howard will be meeting with the Houston Rockets once the free agency opens up after this weekend. I’ve been clamoring all season about Howard’s possibly joining up with the Rockets.

In a previous article, I thought the Rockets would be Howard’s #1 choice.

Free-agency officially opens 12:01 am on Monday, July 1 (Sunday 9:00 pm in L.A.). However, deals cannot be official until July 10, when Howard is expected to make his much anticipated final decision.

Howard’s also expected to meet with the Dallas Mavericks and the Atlanta Hawks.

Howard’s an Atlanta native, but there is no way he would play for the hapless Hawks. The Mavericks and Mark Cuban are an attractive venue as well. Cuban’s well known for taking care of his players, and we all know how sensitive Howard has become.

I think Howard would flourish playing next to James Harden and Jeremy Lin who are both exceptional passers and extremely unselfish. Both players can penetrate into the heart of the defense, which would leave Howard wide-open underneath the basket and able to catch lobs all day.

The Rockets have a young talented group of core players — while the Los Angeles Lakers are currently one of the oldest teams in the NBA. Howard, 27, averaged 17 points, 12 rebounds, and two blocks per game last season while battling a torn labrum and coming off summer back surgery.

Howard reportedly indicated the Lakers would have the final word before he makes his decision. The Lakers have put themselves in a precarious situation — if they don’t re-sign 6-foot-11 center, they will have virtually no chance of competing for a NBA title next season.

Eric N. Ellington covers the Los Angeles Lakers for Rant Sports. Follow him at @EricNEllington

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