Everybody in the known universe knew that Dwight Howard was not going to be in a Houston Rocket uniform next season. But the uniform he will be representing, the Atlanta Hawks may be his best one since his Orlando Magic days.
Howard just wasn’t a good fit in a Houston offense that is controlled by James Harden’s ball-dominated game. What also hurt Howard in Houston, and during his year with the Los Angeles Lakers, was the lack of floor spreading that hurt his game.
In Atlanta, not only will he be going back to his hometown to try to chase that elusive championship, but he will be in an offense that focuses on spreading the ball, and this will do wonders for Howard’s declining game.
The move to Atlanta will also do his psyche wonders as well. He will be in a city where he is stilled loved, and that may very well inspire Howard to return to his rightful place as one of the NBA’s best big men. Howard needed more than a new start, he needed to come back home.
So what does this mean for the Hawks? Well, for starters, it means that Al Horford is almost certainly gone, but with Howard now anchoring the middle, it will provide Atlanta with a big man that can protect the paint, something that was quite a sore spot for the Hawks over the past few years.
Howard’s addition keeps that Hawks as a playoff team. Whether they’re still contenders for the Eastern Conference crown is still up to debate, but Hawks fans can rest easy knowing that the team filled their biggest need this offseason.