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Dwight Howard has always been a charismatic player and fan perception has always been very important to the dominant big man.
Back in Orlando, Howard had stated that he was uncomfortable with the media scrutiny there, which revealed his desire to be liked and his disdain towards being critiqued. His petty back-and-forth affair with Shaquille O'Neal has left a very uncomfortable perception in regards to both players in the public eye.
In what can be considered a major step up from the Orlando media circuit, Howard is about to be subject to the biggest media spotlight in the NBA.
So far, Dwight Howard has given glowing reviews regarding his time in L.A.
However, the first signs of criticism and scrutiny are beginning to form in response to the Lakers' preseason losses.
Although all of the Lakers' players, including Howard, have given great PR responses to their criticisms thus far, the incoming media scrutiny will only intensify should the Lakers continue to struggle.
Given the fact that Howard has only one year left on his contract before becoming an unrestricted free agent, the biggest question on the minds of the Lakers is whether or not Dwight Howard will stay after the conclusion of this season.
However, the question has a very simple answer. Dwight Howard will stay if he is content. Dwight Howard is content when his team is winning, which is the hallmark of all great players.
Howard has proved via his controversy in Orlando and the manner in which he handled his relationship with Stan Van Gundy that he is not the type of player that deals well with adversity and criticism.
The losses that the Lakers have accumulated in the preseason have spurred minor concerns that there will definitely be an adjustment period needed in order for the Lakers to really get rolling.
If the Lakers do undergo a string of losses, the onus of the blame with fall on the Lakers' highest profile addition, Howard.
Dwight Howard left Orlando due to his unwillingness to tolerate losing, the scrutiny and disdain he faced in light of his feud with Stan Van Gundy, and the need for a fresh start due to the defacement of his image following the contract situation in Orlando.
If the preseason is any indication, Dwight Howard may have to face many of those tribulations and criticisms once more before the Lakers can really click. The question is whether Howard will be content to play through this adversity and remain a Laker, or choose to flee to greener pastures.