Magic Trade Rumors: Delay in Trading Dwight Howard Will Cost Orlando Dearly
Much of the talk in the NBA right now concerns the innumerable trade scenarios involving All-Star center Dwight Howard of the Orlando Magic. However, if a recent report by Sam Amico of FOX Sports is to be believed, then Orlando general manager Rob Hennigan feels "no need to rush" to deal Howard.
Yet if Hennigan continues to drag his feet, then by the time he is ready to pull the trigger, there may not be any targets left.
There have been no shortage of suitors for Howard's services, including the Brooklyn Nets, Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and Cleveland Cavaliers. However, as Sam Amick of Sports Illustrated recently reported via Sulia, this high level of interest hasn't motivated Hennigan to move things along with any sense of urgency.
The Magic, I'm told, are hopeful that they can pull the trigger on a deal by early August (although I certainly couldn't tell you which one it might be). That being said, new GM Rob Hennigan [...] is proving to be very prudent in this process, meaning those hopes won't be realized if the deal simply isn't up to his standards.
Matters haven't been helped any by the fact that, according to Sam Amico's report, the Magic keep changing the parameters of a potential deal for the 26-year-old.
This waffling was apparently enough to knock at least one possible trade partner out of the running, as the Brookyln Nets effectively removed themselves from the running when they inked center Brook Lopez to a four-year, $61 million contract.
That indecision by Orlando brass isn't the only issue holding up a potential Dwight Howard trade.
Howard's agent recently told ESPN's Ric Bucher that his client still intends to test free agency after the 2012-2013 season:
"Dwight's position has remained unchanged since the end of this past season," said Dan Fegan of LaGardere Unlimited. "He fully intends to explore free agency at the end of next season, regardless of what team trades for him."
The price tag for Howard was already steep enough, and with the very real possibility that Howard could in effect be a one-year "rental," that price just got significantly higher—so high, in fact, that more of Howard's suitors may simply decide that the enigmatic but talented big man just isn't worth it.
Granted, Howard is a difference-maker on the basketball court (especially on the defensive end), and given what the Magic have invested in the eight-year veteran, it's understandable that Orlando would want to maximize its return on that investment.
However, there's a slim-to-none chance that Howard is going to be in Orlando after this year, and if Hennigan and the Magic continue to drag things out, then the return on that investment is going to be exactly squat as they watch Dwight Howard walk out the door in free agency next summer.
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