It's no surprise that Dwight Howard wants to be off the Orlando Magic.
Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel reports that the six-time All-Star favors a move to the Brooklyn Nets, which, in turn, rules out a potential trade with the Los Angeles Lakers for center Andrew Bynum.
With the Magic unsatisfied in previous Nets' offers, a third team could emerge as the hinge that opens the door for Howard to land in Brooklyn this summer.
That team is the Cleveland Cavaliers.
How It Would Work
Sam Amico of Fox Sports Ohio recently reported the Cavs are interested in getting involved in a sign-and-trade that would send Kris Humphries to Cleveland. The Cavaliers would likely also receive guard MarShon Brooks in addition to a first-round pick.
The trade could depend on the Cavs' unwillingness to take on Humphries' contract—an estimated $8 or $9 million—for more than one year. Humphries is an unrestricted free agent, but Cleveland would only use him to stockpile future draft picks, Yahoo! Sports' Adrian Wojnarowski says.
In return, the Nets would get their man. The Magic would likely land center Brook Lopez, a first-round pick and the ability to offload a high-priced veteran, such as Hedo Turkoglu or Jason Richardson.
The Cavs' Role
Cleveland can be that ever-so-important hinge in this trade. They need to take on Humphries' contract for one year. Although there is little interest in the 27-year-old, the Cavaliers would leverage him to add draft picks.
Cleveland already has two first-rounders next year.
Furthermore, this deal depends on whether or not the Nets re-sign Lopez. Brooklyn head coach Avery Johnson recently said (via New York Daily News) the organization's goal was to get the former Stanford standout back in a Nets jersey, but don't be surprised if Howard ends up on the East Coast.
With the Cavaliers—and now most likely the Magic—on a youth crusade, it shouldn't be long before the big-spending Nets look for a third team to make this trade happen.