One option is to keep him past the deadline in hopes that he will re-sign with the team during the summer and not leave them “high and dry” for another team.
A second option is to trade him before the deadline and get decent pieces in return for him and prepare to start the post-Howard era in Orlando.
The Orlando Magic at this time have not made a clear announcement in regards to what direction they are planning on going in.
If the Magic are looking to trade Howard, there are two hungry teams in the Western Conference pursuing the big man. According to Ken Berger of CBS Sports, the Houston Rockets and the Golden State Warriors are willing to bring in Howard on a “rental” basis and hope to talk him into staying with either one of them long-term.
According to NBA reporter Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld.com, Howard could be sent to a team other than New Jersey, the Los Angeles Lakers or the Dallas Mavericks this season (his preferred destinations) as a rental player.
The Rockets are a team that can put up an enticing package for the Magic consisting of a mixture of young players (Chase Budinger, rookie Marcus Morris), draft picks and expiring contracts (Samuel Dalembert, Jonny Flynn).
Will General manager Daryl Morey put forth such an offer for Howard?
The Warriors are yet another team that could also put forth a pretty good offer as they pursue a legitimate big man under first-year head coach Mark Jackson. Guard Monta Ellis would be a likely piece sought by the Magic amongst others (Klay Thompson, Stephen Curry) that the Warriors may or may not want to part with given the short-term consequences of a potential move for Howard.
At this time things still remain mysterious regarding the entire situation. Hopefully the Magic can make up their mind on what they would like to do with Howard and allow for other teams to make their respective moves to make it an interesting week in the NBA.