Dwight Howard: 6 Destinations Where D12 Should Sign Long-Term Deal

Ethan Norof@ethan_norofCorrespondent IFebruary 22, 2012

Dwight Howard: 6 Destinations Where D12 Should Sign Long-Term Deal

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    Dwight Howard has made it clear that his desire to be traded still exists and that there has been no deviation from his preferred list of teams.

    While the first three slides will explore those teams Howard has listed as those to which he would like to be dealt, we're also going to explore where Howard might fit in best if he decides to explore alternative avenues.

    Where he'll wind up playing after the March 15 trade deadline is very much up in the air, but there are teams that could definitely use his services where he'd fit in well.

    Let's go through Howard's most enticing options.

Los Angeles Lakers

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    A chance to be in one of the largest markets in the league, play alongside Kobe Bryant and immediately improve the odds of winning a championship should appeal to Dwight Howard.

    Despite all of the fluff, rumors and misinformation that have been rapidly spread around throughout the Howard saga, his request to be traded still stands, and his list of preferred teams remains unchanged.

    Howard would have the chance to be the face of the franchise after Bryant walks away and has the opportunity to win with one of the greatest players of all time before that happens.

    If winning is truly what is most important to Howard, it's hard to see how the Los Angeles option is not appealing.

Dallas Mavericks

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    It's long been speculated that Mark Cuban's vision for the Mavericks is to pair Deron Williams and Dwight Howard alongside Dirk Nowitzki and form a "big three" of his own.

    With Howard very clearly hoping to play with Williams, Dallas could be a market that appeals to both of them for a wide-ranging list of reasons.

    Neither player has won a championship to this point in his career, but joining forces and having Dirk Nowitzki on their team is one fairly emphatic step to take in the process.

    It would give the Mavericks a very different look, but there is no doubting that the team would be in title contention for every season those three were together.

New Jersey Nets

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    Here is where things really get interesting.

    Now that Brook Lopez is healthy, the Nets will put on the full-court press to lure Dwight Howard into the fold.

    With the move to Brooklyn imminent and good friend Deron Williams already in the fold, the Nets would go from bottom-feeder to instant contender with the addition of Howard's services.

    Howard wants the opportunity to win multiple championships, as well as the ability to go somewhere where he could be "the guy," and that is a big reason why the Nets may be so appealing to him for his future.

Chicago Bulls

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    If Dwight Howard really wants to win multiple championships sooner rather than later, it's time to start discussing Chicago as a very serious option for doing exactly that.

    Can anyone imagine a potent pairing of Derrick Rose with Howard in terms of what they could do together? Rose's ability to attack the basket paired with Howard's freakish athleticism would allow the two to decimate the opposition on a regular basis.

    The Bulls would have to put together an impressive package of talent in a trade in order to get Orlando to bite, while simultaneously clearing enough cap space to sign Howard long-term, but that is a risk worth taking when talking about the biggest man in the game.

    Players would likely flock to Chicago to play with Rose and Howard in their pursuit of a championship.

New York Knicks

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    New York is in no way currently poised to make a legitimate run at Dwight Howard, but if Rich DeVos wants "multiple established veterans" in exchange for his big man, the Knicks have those assets available.

    Although the Magic reportedly have "zero" interest in Stoudemire due to his balky knees and the fact that his contract is uninsured, GM Otis Smith and the Orlando front office will have to make a decision as to what the best offer on the table is from a talent perspective for Howard.

    Stoudemire, Chandler and a promising young player like Iman Shumpert could set off some intrigue in the minds of those who would still like to see a championship in Orlando, with or without Howard in the fold.

    And if Howard somehow found his way to New York (which is a long shot), he would be foolish not to sign an extension to play with Carmelo Anthony and call Madison Square Garden his home arena.

Boston Celtics

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    Howard caused some people in and around the New England area to get giddy when he heaped praise on the franchise, but he did not say that he'd like to play for the Celtics despite many spinning it that way.

    But, let's explore this avenue: Would Boston make sense for Howard?

    For a team that has had so many legendary players, he certainly wouldn't be the star upon his arrival, but he'd have the opportunity to be a beloved player for a very long time.

    There has been a lot of talk about the Celtics rebuilding after this year, but if GM Danny Ainge could sell Howard on a pairing with Rajon Rondo with Paul Pierce still around, Boston would still be very relevant as a legitimate contender.

    With a ton of cap space available to use in free agency and a gaping hole inside, Howard would certainly fit a major need for this team.