While it appears the Magic are dotting the I's and crossing the T's on a blockbuster deal that will send Dwight Howard to the Lakers, there was no shortage of other potential destinations for the star center. According to Nick Friedell of ESPNChicago.com, the Bulls were one darkhorse suitor that stayed active in trade discussions with the Magic up until the end.
Chicago engaged former Magic GM Otis Smith in talks involving Howard, and continued to have dialogue with new GM Rob Hennigan after Orlando made its front office changes, says Friedell. Derrick Rose was, of course, off-limits in trade talks, so any Bulls package would likely have involved some combination of Joakim Noah, Luol Deng, Taj Gibson, Nikola Mirotic, draft picks, and perhaps even Omer Asik, before he signed with the Rockets.
Based on the trade the Magic have agreed to, Chicago's offer, which would have included at least one expensive, long-term deal in Noah or Deng, may not have appealed to the Magic. It's also unclear whether the Bulls would have pulled the trigger on any deal without assurances that Howard would sign long-term, but it sounds as if they were at least thinking about it.