Dwight Howard Trade: Superstar's Move to LA Lakers Is Bad News for NBA
With Dwight Howard reportedly set to take his talents to Los Angeles in a huge four-team trade, reported by ESPN, the NBA finds itself in a very precarious position, one where the rich continue to get richer and everyone else is left fighting for scraps.
In this new era of the NBA, where the players have all the control and coaches have to walk on eggshells just to keep their job, the league has fallen into very dangerous territory.
Howard is just the latest example of the inmates running the asylum, for want of a better phrase. The players have been given all the power in the NBA, which puts certain teams at a very distinct disadvantage.
With the exception of Oklahoma City, a team that has a great, young nucleus that is, for the most part, locked up to long-term contracts, the small-market franchises are falling apart.
Does The NBA Have A Problem With Its Players?
Two years ago, LeBron James decided that he wanted to go to Miami to play alongside Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh. That was actually a rare exception involving free agents. Almost all of the other deals involving top stars occur because the player is unhappy--either publicly or privately--with the direction of the franchise, or the player's current team knows it has no chance to re-sign him.
Howard was already a superstar, the face of the Orlando Magic franchise, but he wanted out for the chance to become something more. Winning might be an important factor for Howard, which the Magic aren't going to do right now, but he appears to want that icon status.
Moving to Los Angeles is an interesting choice for Howard, just because he will have to play in the shadow of Kobe Bryant and even Steve Nash. He is not going to be THE star of the show, but he will be a star among stars.
It is good for him, but the NBA has a dilemma on its hands. If star players are able to control everything they want to do, small-market teams that don't have the ability to get a player exposure like a big city can, what incentive is there for them to play for that team?
Contracts in the NBA seem to be signed with pencil, because players feel no obligation to live up to them. Howard is proof of that. He has reportedly gotten his wish to get out of Orlando.
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