UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:48 p.m. ET
Dwight Howard concludes the press conference by side-stepping a question asking him where he would rank the Lakers' starting five.
Overall, Howard didn't address anything about his past or his future, but wanted to make note that he did not quit on his teammates in Orlando.
Howard seemed sincere when thanking the Orlando organization and being welcomed in Los Angeles.
Aside from Brooklyn, LA is probably the best place Howard could have went, from a marketing standpoint. He has the perfect personality to really create a brand for himself int the LA media market.
Howard concluded the press conference by giving a shout out to the fans who he plays against on Xbox.
This makes for one interesting NBA season.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:38 p.m. ET
Like Tim Tebow, Dwight Howard relied heavily on the word "excited" to describe his new home in Los Angeles.
"This city has been so great to me so far ... they've welcomed me with open arms."
As far as discussing Orlando or anything to do with the organization, Howard continues to side-step those questions and say that he's just focusing on the Lakers and today, not his past or future contract negotiations/impending free agency.
For any normal player, I would tell you that if the Lakers have a successful season but don't win a championship, Howard would return to LA to finally get a ring.
But this is Dwight Howard.
And he'll probably wake up tomorrow morning with a completely different regard for his future.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:26 p.m. ET
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:24 p.m. ET
Howard says that he's looking forward to expanding himself as a brand in Los Angeles and that he's looking forward to the future.
That future could be less than one year unless he signs an extension with the Lakers.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:22 p.m. ET
Dwight doing his best Kobe impression. It sounds spot on, actually. If this was on the radio, I'd probably think that was Kobe speaking.
Howard was also asked a question about his relationship with Kobe and he answered by saying he's ready to follow Kobe and the rest of the team.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:20 p.m. ET
Howard is getting grilled by the media regarding if he'll enter free agency after this season.
He did a nice job of side-stepping the question, saying he's only focused on today.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:19 p.m. ET
"Myself and the Magic organization can all start over and begin a new career."
This will indeed be the start of a new career for Howard in Los Angeles. He still has yet to publicly state if he'll accept an extension or not, but you've got to think that if the Lakers have a successful year, he'll want to come back.
Then again, this is Dwight Howard we're talking about.
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:16 p.m. ET
Howard keeps thanking God and says that he feels blessed to be able to play basketball again after having back surgery. He also went on to thank the Orlando Magic and the city of Orlando.
Howard's thank yous seemed sincere
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:13 p.m. ET
Dwight Howard is holding up his jersey for the media to snap pictures and he just keeps saying, "oh man" with a big smile on his face.
Maybe he'll find happiness in LA after all?
UPDATE: Friday, August 10 at 8:10 p.m. ET
Dwight Howard is at the podium. Liftoff!
Don't forget, Howard will likely miss the beginning of the season while he recovers from back surgery.
The Dwightmare is over.
In what will go down as one of the biggest trades in the history of the NBA, the Orlando Magic have finally ended the Dwight Howard saga, trading the 6'11" center to the Los Angeles Lakers in a four-team deal, per ESPN.
Let's take a look at the deal:
Magic Get: SG Arron Afflalo, PF Al Harrington, G/F Moe Harkless, C Nikola Vucevic, PF Josh McRoberts, SF Christian Eyenga and five draft picks.
Lakers Get: C Dwight Howard, PG Chris Duhon and F Earl Clark
76ers Get: C Andrew Bynum and SG Jason Richardson
Nuggets Get: SF Andre Iguodala
The Lakers have a history of acquiring All-Star big men, as names like Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Shaquille O'Neal, Wilt Chamberlain, Pau Gasol immediately come to mind.
Former Los Angeles great and current ESPN analyst Magic Johnson reacted to the trade, tweeting:
This was a great move for the Lakers, who were able to kill two birds with one stone, by dumping the streaky and cantankerous Andrew Bynum and acquiring the best center in the league.
As for the Magic, if you're going to give up a six-time All-Star and three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year, you've got to get more in return than a bunch of average players—with the exception of Afflalo and maybe Harrington—and five protected draft picks.
There's a lot more reaction and analysis to come from this move.
Dwight Howard will be introduced to the city of Los Angeles tonight at 8 p.m. EST, so keep it locked right here for updates and analysis.
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