It's looking more like the Lakers will have Dwight Howard in the lineup to start the regular season, as Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports hears the big man is determined to be ready for opening night, and that the progress he's made in recent weeks has upped his chances. Howard says his surgically repaired back is at 85%, Wojnarowski reports. The Lakers still don't have a timetable for his return, but it's just one more reason for optimism in L.A. The mood is upbeat all around the league this time of year, as teams start fresh in training camp. Here's a roundup of news from camps across the Association.
- John Reid of The Times-Picayune hears that Hornets GM Dell Demps will work in tandem with executives Mickey Loomis and Dennis Lauscha on the team's basketball-related decisions. It's unclear exactly what role everyone will play, but I imagine Demps will continue to function in the day-to-day role of most GMs.
- Ronald "Flip" Murray, who has an agreement to join the Grizzlies, was not on the camp roster released by the team today, but Ronald Tillery of the Memphis Commercial Appeal says the journeyman guard will indeed be in camp (Twitter link).
- This could be the last training camp for Heat swingman Mike Miller, who hinted at retirement after last season and wants to see how his back responds before promising anything beyond this year, Chris Tomasson of Fox Sports Florida writes (Sulia link). Miller's deal has more than $13MM left on it and runs through 2015, with a player option in the final season.
- Many of the Celtics veterans have been working out together since early September, while the rookies have been in Boston for most of the past three months. That's led to better chemistry as camp starts, Chris Forsberg of ESPN.com writes.