Three years removed from “The Decision," this NBA offseason might have featured its most star turnover since the summer of LeBron.
With that said, let’s see what the word, or tweet, is on the NBA’s biggest moves this offseason.
LeBron James was the biggest fish to change area codes in 2010. This summer, that distinction goes to Dwight Howard, as Hall of Famer Isiah Thomas notes:
Mixed amongst such praise was ire from one of Howard's many detractors, blogger Kevin O'Keefe:
Howard to Houston the power has shifted in the west!!— Isiah Thomas (@iamisiahthomas) July 5, 2013
Still, while Howard garnered most of the attention, an overlooked move was made by one of the teams he spurned, the Golden State Warriors. Jeric Griffin of Rant Sports details the impact Andre Iguodala could have on Golden State in this video.
RT @sportspickle: Rockets lose Dwight Howard sweepstakes, sign Dwight Howard. >> Agreed, he prove to be a cancer— Kevin O'Keefe (@kevinokeefe) July 5, 2013
While coaches aren’t universally viewed as game-changers in the NBA, ESPN.com’s Arash Markazi believes that the Los Angeles Clippers' acquisition of Doc Rivers could be pivotal.
The guys @sportsbook_com have made the Nets 25/1 to win the title from 50/1 on news of possible trade w/Celtics— darren rovell (@darrenrovell) June 28, 2013
The Clippers are no longer simply changing their culture and becoming more respectable. Their metamorphosis from laughingstock to championship contender is complete. They will not only be one of the favorites to win the title next season; they've set the groundwork to be contenders for the foreseeable future.
Even amidst the criticism that has engulfed Howard, his move to Houston is the most impactful transaction this offseason.
In a league short on productive centers, his ability to control the paint on both ends of the floor is unmatched.
You can question his effort and leadership all you want, but he's still worth every cent of his new max contract.
Lost in the hoopla surrounding his well-documented indecisiveness is the fact that he still averaged 17.1 points. 12.4 rebounds and 2.4 blocks per game last season—and that's coming off back surgery.
While there's no doubt that all the aforementioned acquisitions will impact their new teams, those teams would take Howard instead if afforded the chance. In Brooklyn and Golden State's case, they already tried.
Some will say that Howard is immature and will never win a championship.
Even if time proves them right, I still say this: Howard is the best acquisition of the 2013 offseason.