Lakers Rumors: LA Should Pass on Dwight Howard and Grant Hill

Kyle NewportFeatured ColumnistJuly 11, 2012

ORLANDO, FL - APRIL 28:  Jameer Nelson #14, Dwight Howard #12 and Grant Hill #33 of the Orlando Magic stand on the court as they take on the Detroit Pistons in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals during the 2007 NBA Playoffs at Amway Arena on April 28, 2007 in Orlando, Florida.  The Pistons won 97-93 and won the series 4-0.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Doug Benc/Getty Images)
Doug Benc/Getty Images

Now that Sporting News reported earlier Wednesday that the Steve Nash trade is complete, the Los Angeles Lakers are set for the 2012-2013 NBA season and should pass on Dwight Howard and Grant Hill.

The Lakers have a veteran roster who can now challenge the Oklahoma City Thunder for supremacy in the Western Conference. 

With Nash, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, the team is in a win-now mode. They have a few years to compete for an NBA title, so they do not need to add anyone or make any drastic changes.


Dwight Howard

He may be one of the game's best players, but the Lakers would be better off without trading for Dwight Howard.

After undergoing back surgery last season, Howard is a question mark. He is a great defender, but back problems may be an issue for the rest of his career.

With the Brooklyn Nets the favorites to land Howard, the Lakers may feel obligated to offer too much to get him. 

ESPN's Ric Bucher tweeted earlier Wednesday the Nets will make a final decision on a possible Howard trade:

The team already has good chemistry between Bryant and Bynum, and it may be difficult for Kobe to develop the same connection with Howard. With Nash being added, it would take time for the three stars to get into a flow.

It is unknown whether or not Howard would be open to signing an extension in Los Angeles, so chemistry would be a key. If they can't mesh together quickly, the experiment would be over before they even have a chance to work through a full season.

Bynum will have to decide if he wants to sign an extension to remain in Los Angeles if the trade does not go through. Otherwise, the Lakers may want to pursue a trade involving Bynum.

Assuming Gasol and Bynum stick around with the team, the frontcourt would continue to feature great length. 


Grant Hill

As Grant Hill's career winds down, he is looking to join a team with a chance to win a championship.

On Tuesday, TNT's David Aldridge tweeted Hill has narrowed his options down to three teams:


Grant Hill still considering Heat, Thunder, aswell as Lakers, per source. Story up soon on's Hang Time Blog.

— David Aldridge (@daldridgetnt) July 10, 2012

While the other two teams met in the NBA Finals in June, the Lakers have a team capable of winning a championship.

The 39-year-old forward's career has been hurt by chronic injuries, and he would not be an upgrade for Los Angeles.

Grant missed some time after spraining his knee less than a month into the lockout-shortened season.

There is no chance of him starting in Los Angeles, but he would not bring much to the bench.

Metta World Peace, who may be involved in a trade for Howard, is still a productive player. The 32-year-old World Peace has not been plagued by injuries, and he still has a few more good years left.

After playing for $6.5 million last season in Phoenix, Hill would need to take a big pay cut to play for the Lakers. Even after signing for cheap, he still wouldn't be enough to put this team over the top.


Last season saw Hill put up some of the worst numbers in his career in just about every category. 

At just over 10 points per game in 49 games last season, he shot 44.6 percent from the field and only 26 percent from behind the arch (stats from 

Sadly, it looks like his career is almost over. Since this season will be a full slate of games, Hill could have a hard time making it though an 82-game grind.



Howard is a phenomenal player, but the Lakers should not give up too much for someone who will not commit to them. They cannot be influenced by the Nets making a push for him.

Bynum had a breakout season last year, so sticking with their star center wouldn't be a bad thing for LA. Bynum is younger than Howard, and he already has chemistry and experience with this team.

The Lakers need to pass on Hill if he chooses to play another season. Last year was tough for him, and his numbers indicate he does not have much left in the tank.

Injuries have always been an issue, and it's uncertain if his knees can handle the punishment of a full NBA season.

Nash, Bryant, Gasol and Bynum give the Lakers a great chance to contend for an NBA title in the 2012-2013 season. The Thunder have an athletic bunch, but the Lakers finished strong last year with Ramon Sessions at point guard.

With Nash as the newest distributor, Los Angeles is a serious threat to win a championship.