The news of the night is the news of the year in the NBA: An agreement has been reached on a trade that sends Dwight Howard to the Lakers. Andrew Bynum is also involved, as he heads to the Sixers. Of course, both players are eligible to become unrestricted free agents next summer, so the rumor mill is unlikely to stop for either of them anytime soon. Nonetheless, it still represents a blockbuster and a major turning point for several teams in 2012/13 and beyond. Here's what writers around the league are saying:
- If the Lakers can't re-sign Howard next summer, the Mavs "will be there waiting for him," a source tells Marc Stein of ESPN.com. Howard has expressed fondness for the Mavs in the past. In the same report, Kobe Bryant is described as being "ecstatic" about the deal.
- Brian Kamenetzky of ESPNLosAngeles.com says Howard represents an upgrade over Bynum because of his defense, his athleticism, and his ability to fit better with Steve Nash.
- A few league executives believe there has to be something more in the deal for the Magic, tweets Vincent Goodwill of the Detroit News. Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com wonders why the Magic waited so long to make a deal when the offers never improved (Sulia link). Ira Winderman of the South Florida Sun-Sentinel isn't sure any notable free agents would be interested in signing with the depleted Magic next summer (Sulia link).
- Bob Cooney of the Philadelphia Daily News says the Sixers now have the dominant big man team president Rod Thorn and coach Doug Collins have coveted. Cooney took to Twitter to say the trade is a coup for the Sixers, who get at least one season from Bynum and cap space if he leaves.
- Benjamin Hochman of the Denver Post says the Nuggets will lose some offense, but Andre Iguodala will allow them to make major strides on defense, where they've struggled in recent seasons.
- Tim Bontemps and Fred Kerber of the New York Post look at the deal from the perspective of the Nets, who were once considered frontrunners for Howard. Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News says, via Twitter, that the deal demonstrates that the Magic were never too high on Brook Lopez.
- The Cavs were asked to give up a lot more for Bynum when they were a part of trade talks, says Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio (Sulia link).