In the summer of 2012, Dwight Howard was demanding to be traded from the Orlando Magic. His preference, which he made abundantly clear to the media and the Magic, was to be traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. Ultimately he got his wish.
Last summer the four-team Dwight trade went down and big names were shifted all over the league. Howard, Chris Duhon and Earl Clark went to the Lakers; the Denver Nuggets received Andre Iguodala; Andrew Bynum and Jason Richardson went to the Philadelphia 76ers; and the Magic go Aaron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic, Moe Harkless, Josh McRoberts, Christian Eyenga and a future first round draft pick.
Fast forward to Friday evening when Howard spurned the Lakers by signing a four-year deal with the Houston Rockets and it’s clear the Lakers didn’t benefit from that trade. Then when you think about the fact that Iguodala has left Denver and Bynum is set to get out of Philly, it’s pretty clear that the Magic are ultimately the winners of that trade.
In actuality, an argument could be made that they did well in that trade to begin with. Vucevic looks like a budding star in the post for Orlando, Afflalo is an interesting trade chip and they turned some of those pieces into Tobias Harris who appears to have star qualities as a young player.
At the time the trade went down, many people believed the Magic had received too little for losing one of the best players in the league. However, now that the Magic are the only ones who still have real assets from that trade, it’s clear that they ultimately came out on top.