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Only 1 NBA Team Is Interested In Signing Dwight Howard

Only 1 NBA Team Is Interested In Signing Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard experienced an undeniable and objectively impressive career resurgence this year. After multiple failed stints with numerous organizations, it looked like his playing days might be over.

Then the Los Angeles Lakers took a chance on him, he was a vital part of their championship-winning squad and the rest was history.

Now Howard enters free agency with a ton of momentum and significantly greater odds of landing a big money new deal.

Or so we thought.

According to Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated, the current market for Howard is slim.

“Is there a market for Dwight Howard beyond the Lakers?” he wrote. “No, not right now, anyway, at least not above the veteran’s minimum.”

“Howard repaired his reputation with the Lakers last season, accepting a bench role and showing a willingness to sacrifice scoring opportunities to be a defender/rebounder. And he was a key player during the Lakers championship run.

“However a market for the 34-year old Howard just isn’t there. Howard, in an interview with Basketball News, said he wants to get paid this offseason. But the Lakers may be the only team willing to offer him a contract, much less a more lucrative deal.”

The lukewarm response to Howard’s free agency is one of this offseason’s more notable surprises. Although the 34-year-old obviously isn’t the player he was in his heyday with the Orlando Magic, he was still tremendously impressive in his supporting role with LA.

Last year, Howard played on a one-year, $2.56 million deal that became guaranteed after he proved himself to the organization.

Even while playing a career low 19 minutes per game, Howard consistently produced results. He averaged 7.5 points and 7.3 rebounds per outing, but his real contributions came in the form of activity around the basket and defensive support.

Howard’s numbers admittedly dipped a bit in the Finals due to the match-up issues the Miami Heat presented, but that was not indicative of anything grander. He averaged just 3 points and 3.8 assists per outing, while playing a mere 13.6 minutes per game, but again – that is strictly due to match-ups.

Against the Denver Nuggets, Howard was instrumental in slowing down Nikola Jokic and ultimately doing what the Los Angeles Clippers were unable to do just one round earlier.

Prior to Mannix’s most recent report there were some rumblings that the Golden State Warriors might have interest in signing Howard. Of course, that was when it was presumed that they would be a title contender. Klay Thompson’s injury renders that possibility much more unlikely.

If it turns out that Howard’s market really is as small as Mannix is indicating, then the Lakers will no doubt be happy to scoop him up on the cheap. But it also wouldn’t be particularly shocking if another suitor swoops in and makes this process a little more difficult.

Related: Russell Westbrook Is Blocking A James Harden Trade

Charles Kruger

Charles Kruger has been credentialed to cover two Super Bowls, four NBA Finals, and one World Series. A 20-year veteran in the sports world, he has sources spanning the NBA, MLB, NFL, UFC and NASCAR. Currently residing in Los Angeles, Calif., he is Game 7's go-to source for rumors surrounding the Lakers, Clippers and Dodgers.

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