AP Photo/John Raoux
Howard has warned the Magic if they don’t move him by the March 15 trade deadline, they’ll lose him for nothing in free agency. Howard told the Magic again on Tuesday that he wanted a trade, a league source said.
“Dwight’s not a happy camper,” one league source told Y! Sports.
The Magic still prefer what the Lakers could offer in any possible future trade talks, with a possible package of Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum more attractive on a pure talent basis. The Nets have been far more aggressive in the pursuit of Howard than the Lakers, who are usually methodical in trade discussions.
The Orlando Magic don’t have to do anything right now. The New Jersey Nets aren’t going anywhere and neither are the Los Angeles Lakers now that Chris Paul has been traded to the Clippers. If the Magic decide to trade Howard, their primary objective is to negotiate from a position of strength. And that strength will begin to grow as the trade deadline nears.
Now that the Lakers have struck out on Paul, it’s almost assured they’ll focus on Howard. Unless, you know, Los Angeles wants to try to compete in the Western Conference with Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Andrew Bynum, and filler. If the Lakers want Howard, they have to trade for him, which will almost assuredly create a bidding war between them and the Nets. Remember, New Jersey can’t strike out on Howard either because then they run the risk of losing Deron Williams.
Let the games begin.