Details On Dwight Howard Signing With Lakers

Dwight Howard is returning to Los Angeles in a rebounding and rim-protecting role to play alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis. The signing of the center was a complex process for the Lakers, as Shams Charania of The Athletic explains.

The Grizzlies gave Howard and representatives permission to seek out a deal. Once that happened, the big man met with Lakers assistant coach Jason Kidd, with whom Howard played during USA Basketball activities in 2007. The two have a solid relationship and mutual respect for each other from their time in the NBA together, Charania writes in a full-length piece.

In the past, Howard wanted an expanded role on the teams he’d played for. Now, he would be fine with simply rebounding, defending and staying in his lane. Howard has reportedly made these kind of declarations before with no actions to follow up his words. However, Kidd was convinced that Howard had sincerely shifted his mindset.

Next came getting on the same page with Lakers’ stakeholders, from James and Davis to ownership and front office members, Charania writes. Howard then got the green light for the workout with the team, which went well — “amazing” was what one source told Charania about Howard’s performance.

Here’s more on Howard’s path back to the Lakers:

  • Charania hears that Dwight actually arrived at the Lakers’ training facility the day before his scheduled workout, showcasing initiative which impressed the team’s brass.
  • Howard was convincing during an emotional meeting with Lakers’ players and staff, explaining how he had hit rock bottom and understood what he needed to do to remain in the league.
  • Davis, who was one of the players with whom Howard met, prefers to play alongside a true center during the course of the NBA season, a source tells Charania. Davis is comfortable playing the five during the playoffs but his preference is part of the reason the Lakers were targeting centers to begin with after DeMarcus Cousins went down.
  • By multiple accounts, Howard is fully healthy and truly motivated. Charania writes that Howard treated his workout with the Lakers like a post-college player participating in a pre-draft workout.
  • Howard doesn’t feel a need to start at the five but he will compete for it along with JaVale McGee. He’s willing to play any amount of minutes the team needs of him with a source close to Howard telling Charania that “Dwight is ready. He can’t wait.”
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43 thoughts on “Details On Dwight Howard Signing With Lakers

  1. phillyballers

    If you don’t like this move, you aren’t a basketball fan or you’re a LeBron hater. No risk move. And his per 36 still ridiculous. Their D only improves.

    • mcmillankmm

      I’m a Celtics fan so I don’t like it because if could really help the Lakers

    • Jason Lancaster

      I like it, but it’s BECAUSE I don’t like the Lakers, and I see yet another team that fell for Howard’s sweet nothings.

      • I would agree with you on that point but I think the huge factor is the non-guaranteed contract. I think that makes all the difference in the world.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      I love the move because he’s not an improvement over Cousins, despite the fact he’s a better defender. Boogie gave them another distributor on offense and Dwight won’t put up ridiculous numbers per 36 in the twilight of his career anymore, same with LeBron.

      • Theone23

        Oh he’s a big improvement over Cousins. Cousins injury looking like a blessing in disguise at the moment

    • Or you’re a fan of Houston. Or Charlotte. Or Atlanta. Or Washington. Or shoot, the Lakers, whose fans couldn’t wait to tell you that he was a bum for years. I like redemption stories, but let’s not pretend this is his first chance at it. This “like it or you’re not a basketball fan” talk is beyond obnoxious.

  2. I have never been a particularly fervent Dwight Howard fan, but I really hope this is a story of redemption.
    Some of you judge these young man so harshly, a lot of them are from pretty broken backgrounds and might not have the wisdom and guidance a lot of us have had. I’m 35 and only just starting to figure it out!

    • JamesW26

      Agreed. The amount of times I see someone referring to another human being as “trash” is really depressing. We should be better toward each other.

    • jbl, nice post. I agree I was a bum until I about 30. Things started coming together because I started hanging around good men who helped me see the light.

    • wakejeff

      I hope he does well, too, but your implication that he came from a tough background is inaccurate. It could be that he’s too laid back of a personality to fulfill his potential at this high of a level. His incredible talents have covered up the issues with his personality for a long time. In the Lakers’ defense, they aren’t expecting as much out of him as they did during the first go-around seven years ago, so we’ll see.

    • Curtisrowe

      His father was a police officer and his family are devout Christians. His parents had a good marriage. He went to a high school that was a private academy that has a great basketball program. I agree with the sentiments of the post, it’s kinda racist to just assume he is from a “broken background?

      • I didn’t say he was, but a lot of players are, given the social imbalance in America

  3. afsooner02

    Want to believe him….but I give this less than 25 games before he rocks the boat and is released….guess we’ll see.

    • I think it works out. I think Dwight has seen he’s been on the edge of being out of the NBA and it shook him.

      I think the non-guaranteed contract helps as well. This is going to work out and I just hope he stays healthy so the naysayers lay off him.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      Melo only lasted 10 games before the Rockets pulled the plug on him, but the Lakers are far more desperate for help at center so they will probably be forced to keep Dwight since there aren’t any better options available to them.

  4. JonnyLucas

    Dwight isn’t coming in to play backup minutes. If he really is in great shape, he’s gonna get 30, McGee 18-20.

    • Howard still battles with foul trouble. He’s probably good for about 25 minutes max. McGee comes in for 15 or 18 and Davis plays a couple minutes or kuzma.

      • harden-westbrook-mvps

        Definitely 25 minutes max. There’s no guarantee he even starts over McGee, so I think the best bet for Howard’s minutes might be 12-15.

    • Dodgethis

      Pretty easy to get in the hall eh? Play mediocre ball during years where no true centers are playing in their prime, making all star selections a huge asterisk? Once you get real competition the wheels come off and every team rejects you? Sounds like a HOF guy to me!

      • JonnyLucas

        Nah. He’s a hall of famer. 8 time all star, 5 time all nba, 3 times defensive poy. He carried a team to the finals. Made the playoffs most years.

        He just could have been Bill Russell great. His career is an absolute disappointment relative to his talent. Dwight never loved the game, never improved. Had al the physical advantages, like lebron, but none of the will to be great.

      • Curtisrowe

        He’s a HOF lock. He’s 14th in career rebounds. 17th in career blocks. 73rd in career points.

        • Jason Lancaster

          You’re right, but if Howard and Carmelo get in, I think we should change the name. Maybe “Hall of players casual fans voted into the all-star game because of a very limited understanding of metrics.” HOPCFVITASGBOAVLUOM for short.

    • x%sure

      The word “stakeholder” was practically invented to include people like James and Davis. In some companies the word is used to mean allemployees and more. Get it right man your James-hate makes you stupid.

      Sounds like you don’t know Howard’s career either.

    • LeBron James and Anthony Davis absolutely have a stake in this.

      They’re committed and bought into this franchise.

      I think the word you mean is “shareholders,” owners of the team. That’s what they’re not. Stakeholders yes.

  5. Buckman

    When you are about to be unceremoniusly dumped on the scrap heap of basketball history then that seems like a good time to change your “mindset.” We’ll see what happens to his “mindset” after he gets his 1st mad dog stare or worse from LeBron.

  6. I remember when Wilt came. He wasn’t rock bottom but lakes won because he rebounded and blocked shots. And he got a ring.

    • harden-westbrook-mvps

      There’s zero chance Howard gets a ring this year in LA. I guarantee it.

      • Vegas disagrees with you.

        Plus you’re guaranteed means nothing, unless you’re offering to buy us lunch next July if you’re wrong LOL.

        • mcdusty49

          This guy is a Rockets troll that knows very little about basketball, he’s just here to stir the pot and make asinine predictions about the Rockets winning and the Lakers being the worst franchise ever

        • mcdusty49

          I think he might be the Rockets GM, the same knucklehead that called Harden a better scorer than Michael Jordan lol

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