Dwight Howard: Pros and Cons of Dealing for Superman

Matt Shetler@@buccos12Correspondent IJuly 12, 2012

Dwight Howard: Pros and Cons of Dealing for Superman

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    The Dwight Howard saga continues as Howard is still in an Orlando Magic uniform. 

    The Brooklyn Nets could be out for now after giving a max deal to Brook Lopez and the Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets are both still trying to figure out ways to acquire Howard on their own.

    Could a team like the Atlanta Hawks come in and steal Howard?

    Who knows, but the only certainties in this situation is that the Howard soap opera will drag on and there will be a number of teams in line for his services.

    With that in mind, here's a look at the pros and cons for any team making a trade for Howard.

Pro: Franchise Big Man

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    In today's NBA, where big men such as Roy Hibbert and Brook Lopez are getting max deals based on the hope that they could become a dominant big man, Howard is already that guy.

    Having a legitimate dominant center is a luxury and not the norm in today's NBA. Those type of players don't grow on trees and Howard is one of only a few legitimate big men who can dominate a game.

Con: Kills Team Chemistry

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    A team that may be taking on Howard with the thought of contending may want to think twice as Howard will kill team chemistry.

    Not only will he bring the circus that he created in Orlando into town, but he's going to want the ball a lot.

    For instance on a team like the Lakers, I can't see Howard being happy not being the No. 1 option and it could cause issues. A team like the Lakers already has pretty good chemistry with Andrew Bynum in the middle and he doesn't see the ball nearly as much as he should.

    Howard has made it known in the past that he wants to be the man and wants his own team. That's something unlikely to happen and he could be a guy that kills chemistry instead of helping a team win a title.

Pro: Production

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    Very few NBA big men produce at a high level these days and what ever team lands Howard won't just be adding a six-time All-Star to their lineup, but a guy that has averaged 18.4 points, 13.0 rebounds and 2.2 blocks throughout his eight-year NBA career.

    It's awfully difficult to find consistent production like that in the middle these days.

Con: Maybe He's Not as Good as He Thinks

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    Howard is great, but he wants to be a leader and wants to be a closer, but that's not really who he is.

    Believe me, wherever he ends up, the ball won't be in his hands with the game on the line.

    The 49 percent he shot from the free-throw line in 2012 says he's a liability in the fourth quarter and Howard just isn't a go-to guy.

    He may win a title, but it won't be because he throws a team on his back and carries them to one.

    Howard doesn't have a LeBron James-type performance in him.

    When he's not getting the ball late in games, it could create a very unhappy Howard.

Pro: Matchup Problems

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    While Howard might not be a closer, one thing he can do is create matchup problems on a nightly basis.

    Not every team has a guy playing the 5 that commands a double team and Howard does that every time he touches the ball.

    When that happens, everyone else is going to get better looks at the basket, so Howard will have a positive impact on whatever team he goes to.

Con: He's a Distraction

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    Wherever he ends up, there's a good chance he will be dealt without a contract extension, so whoever gets him will be taking a big risk.

    In addition, the distraction that is the Howard soap opera will follow him to his new city.

    The constant media attention and the whining, complaining and the daily changing of his mind is part of the baggage that a new team will get.

    God forbid that Howard doesn't like his new coach or that will become an issue right off the bat as Howard has already killed one coach.

    He's become a guy with a questionable attitude, injury history, and often shows signs of immaturity. 

    Whoever gets him will get all of that in addition to his production.

Pro: Defense

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    Whoever gets Howard instantly becomes a better rebounding and defensive team.

    Howard crashes the glass as good as anyone in the game and his presence as not only a shot-blocker, but a guy that can change a lot of shots is an instant fix to a team's interior defense.

    Sometimes, especially in the playoffs, getting stops is as important as getting buckets and Howard makes a team very good defensively.

Con: Free-Throw Shooting

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    There's really no reason that Howard should be an under 50 percent shooter from the charity stripe, but that's what you get with him.

    Maybe one day he will put making free-throws a higher priority than having a good time or causing drama, but he's made himself a liability late in games.

    In close and meaningful games Howard will be put on the line a lot.

    Shaquille O'Neal, while a poor free-throw shooter, made his when he had to.

    Howard's shown no indication that he can do the same.

Pro: Could Have Him for a Long Time

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    Acquiring Howard means that there's the opportunity to keep him around for a long time, which means the opportunity to build a championship-level team around him.

    If he's happy after being acquired (a big if), then there's the potential to sign him and contend for years to come.

Con: The Price Is Steep

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    The price is very steep to acquire a player that isn't certain to be around for more than a year.

    It could require plenty of draft picks, taking on a couple bad contracts and possiibly parting with young talent.

    That's a lot for a guy who could be just unhappy the minute he arrives as he was in Orlando.

    In addition to paying a heavy price, there's a lot of risk involved.

    Not only could Howard leave, but he's coming off back surgery. That alone could have more of a lasting impact than most would tend to believe.