Orlando Magic Rumors: Latest Free-Agent Buzz and More

Luis Batlle@lbatll1Contributor IJuly 1, 2012

Orlando Magic Rumors: Latest Free-Agent Buzz and More

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    There is no team with more media frenzy in free agency right now than the Orlando Magic with Dwight Howard in town.

    The 2012 offseason will be a critical one for the Orlando Magic in order to replace their automatic 20-point, 10-rebound man at the center spot. With Dwight Howard reportedly wanting out, there is also no question that the pressure is only mounting.

     

    Will the Magic get Howard the deal he wants? Do the Magic have other concerns outside of their All-Star center? Who is going to be the guy to replace Stan Van Gundy in Orlando?

    This is everything you need to know about the latest free-agency rumors and offseason moves concerning the Orlando Magic.

On 54th Thought, Dwight Might Not Be Available After All

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    UPDATE: Sunday, July 29 at 9:32 p.m. ET by Brian Mazique

    We may have movement. Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio gives us:

    With Dwight Howard reiterating his wish to be traded, multiple league sources predict  the Orlando Magic will again step up efforts to find their All-Star center a new team. 

    Several of those sources told FOX Sports Ohio on Saturday they believe Howard could be traded by the end of next week.

    Here we go again with As the Howard Talks Turns, but this time I think there's some fire with this smoke. The Magic gave their last-ditch effort to persuade Howard, and though many may believe they should have given up a while ago, this has to be the time.

    Doesn't it?

    Stay tuned for more.

     

    UPDATE: Monday, July 23 at 8:47 p.m. ET by Richard Langford

    In a bit of news that brings the absurdity full circle, ESPN's Chris Broussard reported that, according to league sources, the "Magic have told rival executives that they might not trade Dwight Howard after all."

    So, they could be sincere in this statement, or they could be making a last ditch effort to increase their bargaining power. 

    At this point, it is useless to guess. The one thing that seems certain is that, in this fluid situation, this stance is likely to change...many times. 

     

    UPDATE: Wednesday, July 11 at 3:50 p.m. ET by Richard Langford

    The Dwight Howard saga has apparently been put on pause once again. Real GM's Jarrod N Rudolph brings us up to speed.

    Sources: Orlando Magic have informed Dwight Howard that they are suspending trade talks in favor of finding next head coach.

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 11, 2012

    Sources: Magic GM Rob Hennigan told Howard the team tired to make a deal but none of the offers met the team's satisfaction.

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 11, 2012

    And all of this coincided with the Nets' desperate attempt to land Howard hitting a dead end. ESPN's SportsCenter passed that along. 

    BREAKING - Dwight Howard trade to @brooklynnets falls through, last-gasp attempt to work a deal has died. @RicBucher w/more on ESPN2 soon

    — SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) July 11, 2012

    So there you have it; we are right back at square one. 

     

    UPDATE: Wednesday, July 11 at 12:53 a.m. ET by Richard Langford

    There is another sign that the Howard to Nets deal has hit a dead end. The Nets are reportedly closing in on a max deal with Brook Lopez. There is next to zero chance that the Nets can acquire Howard without trading Lopez, and if they can't complete this deal, they won't be able to trade Lopez until December. 

    Real GM's Michael Scotto tweeted out the news. 

    If Brook Lopez signs the reported maximum contract offer with the Brooklyn Nets he can NOT be traded until December for Dwight Howard. #NBA

    — Michael Scotto (@MikeAScotto) July 11, 2012

     

    UPDATE: Tuesday, July 10 at 8:56 p.m. ET by Richard Langford

    The Lakers appear to be making headway in their pursuit of Howard. The Los Angeles Times' Mike Bresnahan fills us all in. 

    Key development in Lakers' pursuit of Dwight Howard: They're more open to taking back contract of G-F Jason Richardson (3 yrs, $18.6 mill).

    — Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) July 11, 2012

    I would say this puts the Lakers in the driver's seat here, but this has been dragging on way to long to even tell which seat is the driver's seat. 

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 10 at 7:33 p.m. EDT by Tim Keeney

    The below rumors regarding a trade between the Magic, Lakers and Rockets are still a possibility, but ESPN's Marc Stein reports the Rockets and Magic are also trying to get a deal done between themselves:

    Rockets and Magic discussing direct two-team deals for Dwight-to-HOU & three-team scenario reported by @EricPincus. Story going online now

    — Marc Stein (@ESPNSteinLine) July 10, 2012

    The rumors continue to heat up, and one thing is sure. The Magic are exploring a vast amount of different options to ship Dwight Howard out of town. 

    Lots of teams would hurry to make a deal happen, but Rob Hennigan and the Magic are being smart by taking their time.

    ------End of Update-------

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 10 at 7 p.m. EDT by Ryan Rudnansky

    While there is a shot of a three-team trade between the Magic, Lakers and Rockets, it appears the Magic and Nets would still like a two-way swap to work.

    Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com tweeted on Tuesday:

    Magic and Nets trying to simplify the deal. Still hopeful that deal can be completed. Still focused on dealing Howard to Brooklyn, for now

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 10, 2012

     

    The big reason for this is that Howard has said he will only sign an extension with the Nets before he hits free agency in 2013.

    If the deal between the Magic and Nets crumbles, however, the Lakers will go after Howard regardless, per Rudolph

    The rumored Houston, Lakers, Orlando proposal is very real. But that deal will be priority ONLY after talks with Brooklyn are dead.

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 10, 2012

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 10 at 6:39 p.m. EDT by Ryan Rudnansky

    The Magic, Lakers and Rockets now appear to be packaging a different deal, with Andrew Bynum going to the Rockets and Dwight Howard going to the Lakers, according to Alex Kennedy of HOOPSWORLD.

    The deal would also send "a number of first-round picks, prospects and significant cap relief to the Magic," per Kennedy.

    This trade makes sense in a number of respects. The Magic would be able to rebuild with a good deal of young talent, the Lakers would get their man and the Rockets would be able to fill the void at center. Bynum is rumored to like the Rockets, which could see him signing an extension before he hits free agency if he's traded to Houston. 

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 10 at 4:35 p.m. EDT by Ryan Rudnansky

    Well, looks like the Nets and Magic are thinking about making a simple two-team trade work after the Cavaliers pulled out of talks on Tuesday.

    Alex Kennedy of HOOPSWORLD tweeted: 

    With the Cavs having second thoughts about three-team deal, the Magic and Nets are discussing a simpler two-team trade, according to source.

    — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 10, 2012

    -- End of Update --

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 10 at 1:00 p.m. EDT by Ben Chodos

    The Orlando Magic have once again started fielding offers from teams other than the Brooklyn Nets for their superstar center.

    A source relayed to ESPN's Ric Bucher that the Atlanta Hawks were inquiring about Dwight Howard, but the Magic believed the Hawks were "not the best option," per ESPN.com.

    Talks over four-team deal involving the Magic, Nets, Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Clippers—which would land Howard in Brooklyn—are continuing, but have still not moved closer to a conclusion.

    ----End of Update-----


    Update: Monday, July 9 at 4:10 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    ESPN's Chad Ford sheds some light on the rumored fourth team involved in the proposed blockbuster.

    Ford notes that the Los Angeles Clippers are the fourth team and would acquire MarShon Brooks in exchange for a protected first round pick.

    Just going up on ESPN. Clipoers will be 4th team in D Howard deal. They would take back MarShon Brooks in return for a lottery protected 1st

    — Chad Ford (@chadfordinsider) July 9, 2012

    ----End of Update-----

     

    Update: Monday, July 9 at 2:10 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    Yahoo's Wojnarowski also adds that the proposed deal between the Magic, Cavs and Nets could potentially contain up to 10 different players switching teams.

    He also adds that the Nets need to get a fourth team involved to take on the contract of MarShon Brooks in exchange for a first round pick that the Nets would send to Orlando.

    Wojnarowski breaks it down as follows:

    In the proposed deal, Howard, Jason Richardson and Earl Clark would be sent to Brooklyn, and the Magic would receive the Nets' Brook Lopez, Damion James, Sheldon Williams, Cleveland's Luke Walton and three future first-round picks, sources said. Cleveland would receive Orlando's Quentin Richardson, Brooklyn's Sundiata Gaines, Kris Humphries (on a one-year guaranteed deal), a first-round pick and $3 million from the Nets. Brooklyn also would send Brooks to a fourth team to get them an additional first-round pick to send to the Magic.

    The trade on paper would accomplish two of the Magic's goals, as they would acquire plenty of draft picks and send out a ton of salary, although they wouldn't be receiving a whole lot of young talent in return.

    ------End of Update-----

     

    Update: Monday, July 9 at 1:48 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski reports via Twitter that the Dwight Howard trade is potentially gaining steam and that the Nets could be receiving Howard, Jason Richardson and Earl Clark from the Magic.

    In proposed blockbuster, Orlando would send Dwight Howard, Jason Richardson and Earl Clark to Brooklyn, sources tell Y! Sports.

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 9, 2012

    Wojnarowski adds that the Magic would receive Brook Lopez, Damion James,Shelden Williams, Luke Walton and three or four first round picks as part of the proposed deal.

    In current structure of deal, Orlando gets Brook Lopez, Damion James, Shelden Williams, Luke Walton and 3 or 4 1st rounders, sources tell Y!

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 9, 2012

    ----- End of Update------

     

    Update: Monday, July 9 at 9:07 a.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    The Dwight Howard saga could be coming to an end very soon, as this may be the closest that the Magic have come to finding a deal for their franchise center since the Howard soap opera began, close to a year ago.

    Oddly enough, the Cleveland Cavaliers and owner Dan Gilbert, who has very vocal about competitive balance, could be the team to push Howard to the Nets.

    Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld tweets that Magic brass are meeting this morning to discuss whether to pull the trigger on the proposed Nets/Cavs deal.

    Magic brass will meet at 9 a.m. to discuss if they should pull the trigger on the three-team deal with the Nets and Cavaliers.

    — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 9, 2012

    In addition, Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the deal could involve 14 players and that there could be a fourth team involved to take on the contract of MarShon Brooks.

    Tentacles of Nets-Magic talks covering 14 players, 3 teams w/ possible 4th locking in to take MarShon Brooks to provide pick, sources tell Y

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 9, 2012

    -------End of Update------

Cleveland Demanding Insurance in Potential Deal

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    Update: Friday, July 19 at 8:00 p.m. ET by Ian Hanford

    The Dwight Howard trade saga seems to have one common theme: contract extensions. The Lakers got their commitment from Howard. According to Yahoo! Sports reporter Adrian Wojnarowski the Cavaliers want Andrew Bynum's assurance that Cleveland is in his long-term plans.

    The Cleveland Cavaliers are eager partners in the three-way blockbuster trade talks to send Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers, but won’t proceed until the Lakers grant the them permission to talk to All-Star Andrew Bynum and his agent about the center’s willingness to sign a contract extension, league sources told Yahoo! Sports.

    "Cleveland will only do the deal if Bynum extends," a league official directly involved in the talks told Yahoo! Sports.

    Bynum did recently name Cleveland on his list of preferred destinations, but that doesn't mean anything until he signs on the dotted line. The Cavaliers are making the only sensible choice in making Bynum commit to their future. 

    Adding the Lakers' All-Star center would give Cleveland an incredibly interesting nucleus to build on for the foreseeable future. The three-way swap makes sense for all parties involved.

    This deal seems to have a new wrinkle as each hour passes so be sure to stay tuned. 

Cleveland to Help Orlando and L.A. in Dwight Howard Talks

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    UPDATE: Wednesday, July 18 at 1:15 p.m. EST by Adam Wells

    While the Los Angeles Lakers might want Dwight Howard, they may not be able to make a deal happen with Orlando on their own. 

    As a result, Ric Bucher of ESPN.com reports that the Cleveland Cavaliers have entered the discussion to help make a move a little more enticing for the Magic. 

    The Cleveland Cavaliers may have inched ahead of the Houston Rockets as a facilitator in a potential trade that would send Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers, sources said Wednesday.

    --snip--

    The Cavaliers would land Lakers center Andrew Bynum for a package of draft picks and veteran power forward Anderson Varejao, according to one league source. The Lakers would receive Howard for Bynum. The source said this was merely the framework of a deal being discussed.

    Bucher's report does say that this really isn't close to happening between these three teams quite yet. 

    If Orlando just wants salary relief and picks in return, I think this could be a horrible deal that blows up in the Magic's face. They should be looking to at least get some talent in return. 

Howard Heading to Lakers?

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    Update: Saturday, July 14 at 6:06 p.m. EDT by Michael Moraitis

    A potential deal is in the works that could send Howard to the Lakers with a three-team trade that would involve the Magic and Cleveland Cavaliers as well, per Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld (via Twitter).

    Three-team deal may send Dwight Howard to Lakers, Andrew Bynum to Cavs and picks/prospects/cap relief to Magic. Still trying to get details.

    — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 14, 2012

    -------End of Update-------

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 3 at 2:00 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    More on the Howard to Lakers possible situation, RealGM columnist Jarrod N. Rudolph says that the Lakers are prepared to offer Andrew Bynum and Metta World Peace in exchange for Howard, as long as Howard is willing to sign an extension in Los Angeles.

    Source: Lakers are prepared to offer the Andrew Bynum and Metta World Peace to the Magic for Dwight Howard provided Howard signs extension

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 3, 2012

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 3 at 1:20 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    With all the talk of Dwight Howard going to the Brooklyn Nets, it looks like Magic general manager Rob Hennigan has different plans.

    Hennigan has his eyes set on a deal to the Los Angeles Lakers, one that involves Lakers center Andrew Bynum.

    Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the Magic are focusing on Bynum as their top trade target.

    As Orlando works to unload Dwight Howard, Magic focusing on Lakers' Andrew Bynum as top target, sources tell Y! Sports. Story soon on site.

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 3, 2012

    A Bynum-Howard deal probably makes the most sense for the Magic, and it will be interesting to see if Howard will sign an extension if he is indeed dealt to the Lakers, since the Lakers were originally on his list when the Howard soap opera started over a year ago.

Magic GM Puts Howard and Suitors on His Timeline

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    UPDATE: July 13 at 12:35 ET

    GM Rob Hennigan's attempts to convince Dwight Howard to remain in Orlando apparently weren't enough to keep the big man with the Magic.

    According to ESPN's Ric Bucher, Hennigan,

    "Hennigan, the source said, based his plea on the fact that he was new to the organization and had not been party to the issues that drove Howard to make his trade request."

    The article states that the phone call did not persuade Howard to change his stance.

    NBA.com's David Aldridge offers up this as evidence. 

    Magic GM Rob Hennigan confirms (@JRudolphSports first) that the Magic have shelved trade talks w/Nets for Dwight Howard. Keeping himfor now.

    — David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) July 11, 2012

    Meanwhile, Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix tweeted an actual quote that offers a little insight into his thinking. 

    Magic GM Rob Hennigan: "We're not confining ourselves to a finite timeline. We're confining ourselves to a timeline we are comfortable with"

    — Chris Mannix (@ChrisMannixSI) July 11, 2012

    This is likely just another negotiating tactic, and it is definitely a delay in the process that seems to have no end, and that is finding a somewhat permanent home for Howard.  

    This all has to be driving Howard nuts, but if that is the case, this tweet by ESPN's Brian Windhorst does not lead one to that conclusion. 

    Hennigan confirmed he spoke with Howard today, said it was "positive" & "conversational." Reports are he told Howard talks dead.

    — Brian Windhorst (@WindhorstESPN) July 11, 2012

    After all of this nightmarish debacle comes to a close, how awkward would it be if Howard ended up staying put in Orlando? According to the Orlando Sentinel's Brian Schmitz, Hennigan isn't ruling out the possibility.

    Hennigan also said he spoke with Dwight today and added "there's a chance, yeah" that Howard could return to ORL. Unbelievable.

    — Brian K. Schmitz (@MagicInsider) July 11, 2012

Rockets Make a Push for Dwight

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    The Houston Rockets have long coveted a big man, and they have made no secret about the fact that they'd like to acquire Howard even if they have no assurance he would re-sign at the end of the season. 

     

    Update: July 12, 2012 at 6:56 p.m. EST by Tim Keeney

    Dwight Howard to the Rockets rumors may have legs, or at least Houston thinks so. Daryl Morey and Rockets are planning on using their amnesty on Luis Scola (via Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski):

    Houston has decided to use the amnesty provision on Luis Scola and will likely file with NBA on Friday, league sources tell Y! Sports.

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 12, 2012

    That gives the Rockets cap space to take on Howard and plenty of Orlando's worst contracts. Things just got real interesting.

    -----End of Update------

     

    HOOPSWORLD's Eric Pincus posted a tweet that indicates they could be closing in on doing just that. 

    Very interesting wrinkle - possibility of Scola amnesty to facilitate getting Howard to Rox per @Jonathan_Feigen

    — Eric Pincus (@EricPincus) July 12, 2012

    For the record, I don't like this move for the Rockets because I have severe reservations about the ability to re-sign him. 

Magic Still Working on Dwight Howard Deal with Nets

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    The Orlando Magic are reportedly getting closer to dealing star big man Dwight Howard.

    UPDATE: Sunday, July 8 at 11:58 p.m. ET by Austin Green

    According to Alex Kennedy of HoopsWorld, the Magic are discussing a potential three-team trade with the Brooklyn Nets and the Cleveland Cavaliers.

    The Magic, Nets and Cavaliers are in serious talks on a three-team trade that involves Dwight Howard and many other players.

    — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 9, 2012

    Orlando is still weighing options. Magic brass will meet tomorrow morning to decide if this is best deal. A trade could be completed Monday.

    — Alex Kennedy (@AlexKennedyNBA) July 9, 2012

    This is a major development, as it appears the Magic are seriously considering pulling the trigger on this deal. There's no telling who all could be involved, but according to Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com, this trade would involve as many as 11 players switching teams.

    Sources: Magic, Nets and Cavaliers near completion of Dwight Howard trade. Deal will include 11 players, cash and multiple draft picks.

    — Jarrod N Rudolph (@JRudolphSports) July 9, 2012

    Nothing is official yet, but we will have all the updates for you when they are available.

    -------------END OF UPDATE---------------

    UPDATE: Sunday, July 8 at 8:08 p.m. ET by Sam Quinn

    According to Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com via Twitter, the possibility of the deal occurring is promising:

    This would mark the end of a months-long Howard-led circus in Orlando, and begin a much-needed post-Howard era for the Magic.

    The Magic would probably be receiving some serviceable pieces in return for Howard, but nothing will fill the hole left in the paint and the building if Howard is to leave.

    Stay tuned to Bleacher Report as this developing story unfolds.

     

    ---End of Update---

     

    UPDATE: Sunday, July 8 at 5:56 p.m. ET by Richard Langford

    The Brooklyn Nets are once again coming on strong in their quest to land Dwight Howard. Brooklyn has apparently been working on getting a third team in the deal for a sign-and-trade scenario with Kris Humphries.

    CBS Sports' Ken Berger is reporting that sources are telling him the Nets are "making progress" in finding a third team. This will be a major shift of power in the Eastern Conference if the Nets are able to pull this off after all the moves they have already made. 

     

    Update: Thursday, July 5 at 2:39 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    The Magic and Brooklyn Nets are still talking about a deal that could ship Dwight Howard to his preferred destination, but according to CBS Sports Ken Berger, the Magic are in no hurry to move the big man.

    Berger also notes that the Los Angeles Lakers are still in play but both the Nets and Lakers will need a third team involved.

    Both the Nets and Lakers, however, may need a third team to facilitate the deal to maximize the cap relief Orlando is seeking in any Howard trade. It isn't simply about the players and draft picks the Magic would acquire, but also the ability to relieve their future payroll of burdensome contracts such as those of Hedo Turkoglu and Jason Richardson, sources said.

    -----End of Update------

Magic Sign PG Jameer Nelson

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    Update: Thursday, July 5 at 11:10 a.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    Jameer Nelson and the Magic have reached an agreement on a new contract, according to Joshua Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel.

    Jameer Nelson and the Orlando Magic have reached an agreement on a new deal, the @orlandosentinel has learned.

    — Josh Robbins (@JoshuaBRobbins) July 5, 2012

    Nelson turned down his player option entering the offseason, not wanting to play on an expiring contract.

    He didn't have a very good 2012 season, but the 30-year-old is still a capable point guard and has expressed a desire to stay in Orlando long-term.

    ----End of Update----

Magic Talking to Nets About Dwight Howard

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    Update: Tuesday, July 3 at 9:05 a.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    Yahoo! Sports Adrain Wojnarowski chimes in via Twitter that in order for a Magic-Nets deal to get done, a third team would have to jump in and take on Kris Humphries via a sign-and-trade deal.

    For Nets-Magic to progress on a Dwight Howard deal, a 3rd team needed to take Kris Humphries in a sign-and-trade, league source tells Y!

    — Adrian Wojnarowski (@WojYahooNBA) July 3, 2012

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 3 at 8:50 a.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    According to CBS Sports Ken Berger, Magic general manager Rob Henigan is trying to get other teams involved in the Howard sweepstakes, including the Atlanta HawksHouston Rockets,  Los Angeles Lakers and possibly the Dallas Mavericks.

    Orlando GM Rob Hennigan also trying to engage the Hawks, Rockets, Lakers and possibly Mavs in Howard talks. Full-court press.

    — Ken Berger (@KBergCBS) July 3, 2012

    Hennigan appears unwilling to cave into Howard's demands and will deal him to whoever comes up with the best offer.

     

    Update: Tuesday, July 3 at 8:30 a.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    ESPN's Chris Broussard reports that Howard could get his wish and be dealt to Brooklyn after all.

    Broussard reports via Twitter that the two sides are discussing a deal that would send Howard to Brooklyn in exchange for Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries and MarShon Brooks.

    Sources: The Nets & Magic are discussing a trade that would send Dwight Howard to Brooklyn for Briik Lopez, Kris Humphies, Marshon Brooks...

    — Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) July 3, 2012

    Lopez and Humphries would be dealt via sign-and-trade deals and Broussard reports that in the proposed deal, the Magic would get the Nets first round picks in 2013, 2015 and 2017.

Magic Don't Currently Like Any Deals Involving Nets

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    Update: Monday, July 2 at 5:45 p.m. EDT by Matt Shetler

    Chris Broussard of ESPN tweeted on Monday:

    Source on Nets moving on from possibility of getting Dwight: "Dwight blew it in March'' when he waived opt-out clause.

    — Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) July 2, 2012

     

    Dwight Howard has clearly stated his desire to go to the Brooklyn Nets, but unfortunately for the 26-year-old center, the Orlando Magic aren't exactly keen on sending him to Brooklyn.

    David Aldridge is reporting that there is currently no deal with Brooklyn that interests Orlando.

    Despite Dwight Howard's desire to go to Brooklyn, there's currently no Nets deal that interests Orlando, according to source. Story up soon.

    — David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) July 2, 2012

    If the Nets truly want to land Howard this offseason, it appears they will have to get more teams involved in a trade. Brooklyn simply doesn't have the kind of attractive young, cheap assets the Magic are looking for. 

    There still could be an eventual deal between the two teams, but it looks like they will have to get pretty creative to make something happen.

Golden State Willing to Trade for Howard Without Long-Term Commitment

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    Another player has entered the Dwight Howard sweepstakes and this one could change the direction of the whole game. 

    ESPN's Chris Broussard is reporting that the Golden State Warriors are willing to trade for Howard without having a commitment from him past next season. 

    source says Golden State still willing to trade for Dwight Howard without having commitment from him beyond next season

    — Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) July 2, 2012

    The fact that the Warriors are willing to take Howard on without a long-term deal in place could clear the way for an easy trade. Golden State has some attractive young assets it might be willing to part with to get a superstar like Howard and the roadblock of getting a guarantee on an extension would be cleared. 

    Howard doesn't seem to know where he wants to play long-term. He has said he wants to move to the Brooklyn Nets but his mind seems to change every week. Shipping him to a team that doesn't need a long-term guarantee would make things much easier for Orlando.

Orlando Magic Want Ryan Anderson, Wish to Clear Howard Drama First

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    Update: Wednesday, July 4 at 7:20 p.m. EDT by Jesse Reed

    Forward Anderson is being courted by the Sacramento Kings, according to the Sacramento Bee's Jason Jones:

     

    Sources confirm RFA Ryan Anderson visited the Kings today.

    — JasonJones (@mr_jasonjones) July 2, 2012

     

    Looks like the Magic have some competition for this up-and-coming player. It should be interesting to see how this plays out.

    -------End of Update-------

     

    Anderson came up in a big way for the team last season, impressing with his much improved game offensively. As a result, there seems to be interest from the organization to bring this talent back this offseason.

    Fox Sports NBA writer Chris Tomasson reports that the Magic definitely want Anderson back in spite of not having discussed his contract yet.

    "Magic say they definitely want him back but they want to resolve what they're going to do with Dwight Howard before they turn to Anderson"

    Once Howard is dealt, it will be interesting to see what kind of a deal they propose to Anderson. He is surely a talent worth keeping, as his 16.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game were both career-high figures. At just 24 years of age, this is a talent the Magic will have to keep content for the better of their future.

Orlando Magic Has "Preliminary Contact" with the Los Angeles Lakers

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    The Orlando Magic might just be considering more options than the Nets in spite of Howard's wishes.

    According to Yahoo! Sports expert Adrian Wojnarowski, the Lakers and Magic have had talks about a deal involving the top-notch center.

    "...The Lakers have been one of the teams in touch with them over the weekend, sources said. The Brooklyn Nets and Houston Rockets have also talked to Magic officials, sources said."

    The Lakers are a team that desperately need personnel change after failing to meet expectations for a second year in a row. There is no question Kobe Bryant is staying put, and Lakers management know they need to assemble a different team around him in order to win NBA championships. 

    Set to be an offseason of epic proportions, it will be interesting to see whether or not the Magic actively pursue other options outside of Houston, Brooklyn, and L.A. going forward.

Dwight Howard Wants Out, Brooklyn Nets Preferable

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    After over a year of speculation as to where Howard will end up, we may have finally found the answer.

    According to ESPN.com's Chris Broussard, Dwight Howard is not only set on leaving the team, but he has also told the organization he wants be traded to the Brooklyn Nets:

    Dwight Howard met with new Orlando Magic general manager Rob Hennigan on Friday and told him he wants to be traded to the Brooklyn Nets...

    Howard has been flip-flopping regularly with staying or leaving. Now more than ever it is finally clear his wish is to go elsewhere.

    Pairing Howard with All-Star PG Deron Williams will undoubtedly give the Nets a chance to do some major damage next season in the East. Make no mistake about it.

Jameer Nelson Enters Free-Agency Market

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    According to The Orlando Sentinel's Josh Robbins, Jameer Nelson had until June 29 to accept his player option, and after not doing so he will now enter the class of 2012 free agents.

    There is no word on whether or not Nelson will leave Orlando, yet it is clear that he is hoping to test the waters.

    At 30 years old, this top-notch talent still has a load to offer to any team as both an offensive and defensive weapon. Last season, Nelson averaged 11.9 points and 5.7 assists in just under 30 minutes per contest.

Who Will Be Next Coach for Team?

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    Although there are no confirmed rumors just yet as to who will take over the coaching job, it is interesting to explore some of the potential candidates that The Orlando Sentinel's Robbins discusses in a June 30 piece.

    Maurice Cheeks is one of the potential choices that Robbins makes mention of. He has coached both the Portland Trail Blazers and Philadelphia 76ers and is currently an assistant with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

    Chances are Cheeks would make a solid fit with the team. He has had success as a coach in the league and tenure as well. He has made the playoffs three times, two of which came with the Trail Blazers. Not to mention, he will surely be a cheaper option as well.

    The debate over who will fill the position will undoubtedly begin to heat up. It will be interesting to see who can follow up the tremendous job Stan Van Gundy was able to do in Orlando.