Dwight Howard apparently has his heart set on becoming a Brooklyn Net.
According to NBA insider Stephen A. Smith on ESPN Radio, a source close to the situation found that the Los Angeles Lakers center recently told Rudy Gay, “on the court,” that he made a mistake by getting traded to the Toronto Raptors.
D12 allegedly went on to say that the swingman “should have waited” until next year, when the two stars could have wound up in Brooklyn together.
It’s important to note that the Lakers and Raptors have not met since January 20, and the three-team blockbuster deal that sent Gay to Toronto went down on January 30, although L.A. was in Memphis to play the Grizzlies on Jan. 23.
Smith added that Howard couldn’t just force his way onto the Nets roster—not without the organization letting go of Brook Lopez and/or Kris Humphries. It’s doubtful he’d be able to just sign as free agent in the offseason, either, as there simply isn’t enough cap room.
The ESPN analyst admitted that the Nets would have to “capitulate,” and the Lakers' brass would need to be positive D12 is leaving this summer for any deal to go down at the Feb. 21 trading deadline.
Ryan Ruocco, Smith’s co-host on the radio program, asked if Dwight was “delusional” by thinking he is still going to wind up in Brooklyn. Smith confirmed that D12 truly believes he will be a Net and that the star center thinks he can make something happen to get there in the near future.
Howard could have become a member of the Nets last year, when GM Billy King was offering the Orlando Magic numerous trade packages—most centered around Brook Lopez—for his services.
If Howard and the Nets are truly going to join forces, it’s going to take a lot of work from King and Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak to find a suitable transaction.
This just doesn’t seem probable with only a few days left to make a deal, but stranger things have happened at the NBA trade deadline.