Dwight Howard was the focus of a lot of NBA trade rumors during this past season, and it was thought that the Houston Rockets would pull the trigger at one point or another. That didn’t end up happening, and he finished the season in Houston. Well, it’s very likely that his time with the Rockets is about to come to an end, he’ll opt out of his contract and land somewhere else. So far, the rumors have him heading to the Chicago Bulls or New York Knicks.
Over the course of the last season, Howard has let his displeasure known in Houston, and his role has diminished as well. The type of defense that the Rockets play eliminates him, and the three-point shooting offense pretty much takes Howard and makes him expendable.
Fansided believes that the Chicago Bulls are possibly a frontrunner for landing Howard once he opts out of his current contract. The Bulls could free up a lot of money by trading away Jimmy Butler for draft picks and bringing in Howard to focus the team around.
Howard’s numbers were down in Houston in 2015, but it’s not like he’s over the hill and completely done. Given the right team and atmosphere, he could see his numbers go up greatly from 13.7 points-per-game. He was still pulling down 11.8 rebounds and averaging almost two blocks per contest, so that’ not too bad at all.
Partnering up Dwight Howard with Joakim Noah, Taj Gibson, and Pau Gasol could give the Bulls the front-court they’ve been longing for. If Derrick Rose can actually stay healthy and on the court, the Bulls could be true contenders in the East.
Now, there is another possible landing spot for Dwight Howard, and that would be with the New York Knicks. Rumors have had the two linked to one another for months and way back into the beginning of the 2015-2016 season, but nothing ever came of them.
Yibida is reporting that Madison Square Garden and the Knicks are very anxious to add a big-name center like Dwight Howard to the team. They cite a comment from ESPN’s Ed Begley who noted that certain sources believe Howard is actually intrigued by the idea of playing in New York.
“…some of Howard’s friends have let it be known recently that the center would be interested in coming to New York as a free agent if he opts out of his current contract. Whether (Phil) Jackson and the Knicks would be interested in a player like Howard is another question entirely.”
The Knicks are reportedly more interested in keeping Robin Lopez in the position he is in as he’s already been signed to a long-term deal. Some believe that Lopez is the better option for the long run since Howard is “on the decline” of his career.
One way or another, Dwight Howard is going to be out of Houston once this season officially ends. That was pretty much made clear back in February after the NBA trade deadline passed, and Howard had not been traded. A couple of days later, Howard started looking for new representation.
Dwight Howard says he’s fired agent Dan Fegan.
— Calvin Watkins (@calvinwatkins) February 26, 2016
Wherever Dwight Howard ends up signing, it could very well be the final deal of his career. The Knicks and Bulls could certainly get the money needed to sign him, but there may be another team or two looking at his talents as well.
For now, Dwight Howard is still a member of the Houston Rockets, but the time is quickly approaching where he can opt out of his contract. When that time arrives, he will likely get a number of offers from different teams, but right now, the rumors have him ending up in the Eastern Conference with the New York Knicks or Chicago Bulls.
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