Lakers Rumors: Dwight Howard to the Brooklyn Nets Is Complete Nonsense

Joseph ZuckerFeatured ColumnistFebruary 16, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 27:  Dwight Howard #12 of the Los Angeles Lakers leaves the game with four fouls against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Staples Center on January 27, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

Dwight Howard moving from the Los Angeles Lakers to the Brooklyn Nets is an absolute nonstarter.

Howard ending up with the Nets has long been dismissed since his trade to the Lakers.

However, ESPN's Stephen A. Smith said on his radio show that the center still somehow believes he will end up in Brooklyn. In addition, Howard had also apparently told Rudy Gay during a Raptors-Lakers game that the forward had made a mistake by going to the Toronto Raptors.

There's the first hole in the story. The Raptors and Lakers last met on January 20, long before Gay would have been playing for Toronto. It's not possible that Howard could have possibly told Gay that during an actual game. Maybe the big man said it another time, but that's not what Smith had said.

Then there's the whole aspect of Howard somehow going to the Nets.

It was a move heavily rumored in the offseason. For various reasons, the trade didn't happen. For the most part, though, Howard already had his shot at the Nets, and he blew it.

By taking themselves out of the Dwight Sweepstakes at the start of the season, the Nets hitched all their wagons to Brook Lopez. Brooklyn signed him to an extension, and the team is looking better for it by the day.

Lopez has been fantastic up to this point in the season. He's averaging 19.0 points and 7.4 rebounds per game, and his PER is a monstrous 24.8, fifth in the league. Lopez certainly earned his trip to the 2013 All-Star Game.

So the question is, why in the world would Brooklyn want to take Howard at this point? The Nets already have one of the best big men in the game in Lopez. At 24 years old, he's still yet to hit his peak.

When he's fully healthy, Howard is the best center in the game, but he has yet to look anywhere near the player of the past few years. He's not an upgrade to Lopez right now and doesn't look to be in the immediate future.

His right shoulder is clearly affecting him. Howard's points per game are the lowest since 2005-06, and his rebounds per game and PER are the lowest since his rookie season. It's one of the worst seasons of his career.

Then, of course, there's Howard's off-court persona. It's appropriate that Howard tries to pass himself off as this big kid because he's acted like a petulant child over the last few years. His press conference stating his loyalty to the Orlando Magic has become a farce with the way he engineered his exit months later.

With the way Deron Williams has struggled this year and made his problems with Avery Johnson public, the last thing the Nets need right now is another player to stir the pot behind the scenes.

If Howard truly does believe he'll be a Nets player, not only does he have the maturity of a child, but he also has the intelligence of one.