With the 2013 NBA Trade Deadline having officially passed, we now know that the Los Angeles Lakers are committed to Dwight Howard. This comes after months of speculation as to whether or not L.A. would trade its controversial big man.
Believe it or not, D-12 knows who he is committed to as well—the Lakers.
Howard has not have given a declaration of intent, nor has he put his signature on a contract. With that being said, D-12 has not been quite as indecisive of late as we've grown accustomed to.
KEVIN DING @KevinDing
I asked Dwight about his role in Lakers offense. Revelatory answer: "We have years to play with each other, so it's a learning process."2013-2-21 20:28:15
For those who don't understand, Howard is an unrestricted free agent after this season—it appears as if his intentions have been stated.
The Lakers may not have it in writing, but they do have a draw that no other franchise in the NBA possesses. Believe it or not, playing in the beautiful city of Los Angeles isn't the primary factor.
It's all about legacy.
Being a Lakers Center
Whether or not you're a fan of the Los Angeles Lakers is, quite honestly, irrelevant. The fact in this matter comes with no bias or opinion.
No franchise in the history of professional basketball is as decorated a history at the center position as the Lakers.
Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, George Mikan and Shaquille O'Neal share two traits in common. For one, they're widely believed to be four of the Top 10 centers in the history of the NBA—some would say Top 5.
The other trait would be that they all played for the Lakers.
For some, that can be viewed as a burden of expectation and comparison that could force an individual to crumble. After all, it would multiply championships in order to step into the class of any of those men.
For others, however, that's called legacy—something every true competitor wants to be a part of.
That's what it's going to come down to for Howard. Whether or not he believes in the current roster is of parallel importance to if he believes in himself.
If D-12 truly wants to be one of the greatest centers in NBA history, he's with the perfect organization.
History of Winning
With Jerry Buss tragically passing away at the age of 80, there will be new ownership. Jim and Jeanie Buss, his children, are next in line to take over.
No matter how much controversy that could create, the Lakers are an organization that knows nothing but victory.
Fans will harp on this season to forget for as long as they possibly can. With that being said, the Lakers have won the second-most NBA championships in league history.
They've also won the most since the turn of the century.
As distant a memory as it may be, the Lakers most recently won a chip in 2010. That's only two seasons ago, for those unaware, and it was their second consecutive title.
Their fifth since 2000.
With this being known, it's a virtual expectation that the Lakers will do all they can to surround Dwight Howard with elite talent. Come 2014 when L.A.'s current crop of stars enter free agency, we will see the beginning stages of such.
So why would Howard ever want to depart?
For lack of a better term, the Lakers remain the most glamorous franchise in the NBA. They have the allure of past championships and happen to play in Los Angeles, one of the most desirable cities in the world.
With a chance to lead elite talent and become one of the all time greats, D-12 knows that there is nowhere better for his career than Los Angeles.