3-on-3 roundtable: Dwight Howard’s future with the Magic and legacy in Orlando | Magic Basketball



Feb 29

3-on-3 roundtable: Dwight Howard’s future with the Magic and legacy in Orlando

Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

From now until March 15 (the date of the NBA trade deadline), all eyes will be on the Orlando Magic as the Dwight Howard saga shifts into its final lap. One of three things will happen: 1.) Dwight will be traded, 2.) the Magic will hold onto Dwight and keep their roster intact, or 3.) the Magic will hold onto Dwight and try to add a piece or two at the deadline.

If Orlando makes the decision to keep Dwight around for a little while longer, then more possibilities will open up. Those scenarios will be discussed if it gets to that point.

Right now, Magic Basketball will discuss what might happen with Dwight in the short- and long-term.

Fact or Fiction: Dwight will be traded by the deadline.

Nate Drexler: Fiction. My thought is that Dwight felt a little overwhelmed by the All-Star festivities and it got him thinking about how to stay here, something akin to Antawn Jamison being the last hope for the Cavs in 2010. Will it work? Who knows, but it probably means Orlando gets to finish the season with Dwight.

Danny Nowell: Fiction. Seems like the Magic really believe that their best bet is to see if Dwight will walk away from their money. The max that Orlando could offer him, considering Florida’s tax structure, would be an enormous amount to walk away from. That may end up mattering just as much as whether Dwight thinks the team will be contending soon.

Matt Scribbins: Fiction. What’s that old saying in the NFL? If you have two quarterbacks, you have zero? Well, the Magic have 1,000 possible trade scenarios and will end up with zero actual trades. Orlando isn’t going to take a bite off the pedestrian platter offered by the other 29 teams, but will instead let Dwight decide his own destination in the summer.

Fact or Fiction: Dwight will be in a Magic uniform next season.

Drexler: Fiction. Even if some pieces come to Orlando soon, it’s going to be on a rental basis. This seems like it’s Dwight’s last stand in Orlando, for better or worse. They will make a run with him in the paint, but there’s nothing that tells me he is going to re-sign a big contract in Orlando.

Nowell: Fiction. I’m as unsure as I’ve ever been with what will happen, but I think it’s slightly more likely that Dwight leaves. With Brooklyn or Dallas looming, Dwight may well be able to choose a team with an elite running mate, high-profile market, and serious cap space.

Scribbins: Fiction. Dwight can pass up the extra money Orlando can offer in a basketball contract and still end up with a fatter wallet. He is enamored with the endorsement deal possibilities in Brooklyn, and his earning potential is nearly unlimited in the Concrete Jungle. If New Jersey doesn’t work out, he will become Mark Cuban’s newest business partner.

Fact or Fiction: Dwight will have his jersey retired by Orlando someday.

Drexler: Fact. How could you not? You would have to be incredibly thick-headed not to put his jersey in the rafters. Whether it is for how dominant he was on the court, how gravitating he was for Orlando, or how much of a boost he gave the city economically, Dwight is a staple in Orlando and his jersey should fly with pride.

Nowell: Fact. This is sort of a toss-up for me, but I think that if Dwight handles this all professionally the franchise will have to realize that the team has returned to legitimacy on his Adonis shoulders. Wherever he plays next year, he’s given the franchise years to be proud about, and that matters.

Scribbins: Fiction. He’s gone after this season, so we only have one path to a retired jersey — winning the NBA title this season in Orlando. Hollinger’s odds has Orlando winning the title 1.5 percent of the time in simulated seasons. So you’re telling me there’s a chance!


Could someone remind me why Dallas is on Dwight's trade list? I understand LA or NY, but what's in Dallas? Is it simply a big market and a good team to play for, or perhaps the ownership?


The Magic are not going to trade Howard! Think of the business aspect of it. Why would you trade your biggest marquee player that fans really come to see?  The Magic will do a trade before the deadline but it wont be Howard. I am confident that G.M. Otis Smith will make moves to get the team to the Finals.


If all three of you think he walks in the offseason, why do you all think he won't be traded? Those two don't seem to jive, unless you think the Magic are OK with him walking away for nothing.


I don't think his jersey would hang in the Amway Center if he left or was traded.  Obviously he's the best player we've ever had for an extended time so I'm on the side that it should be up there someday.  However, there's going to be a lot of pushback on that from fans considering he will have departed in his prime and there were no championships.


Really a Dwight trade right now is worth it to get rid of bloated contracts and get picks.  Obviously the Bynum/Gasol trade would be the best because you could get rid of a bad contract and flip Gasol for picks or a player elsewhere.  Other than that, the Magic can't be competitive getting rid of Dwight Howard so I wish folks would stop pretending that's possible.  Getting rid of him would be all about the long term.


 @CarloSimone I am of the stance to keep him and let him walk.  We haven't won a title WITH Dwight, why would we win one with Bynum/Lopez instead?  Why live in mediocrity for the next 4-5 years?  If he's leaving, lets blow this thing up and bottom out and hit the draft.  The last time the Magic bottomed out, they drafted Dwight Howard.  

erivera7 moderator

 @CarloSimone IDK. I think, barring a Decision redux, I think Dwight would have his jersey retired by the team someday. 


 @SouthSydeEnt  @CarloSimone Well with Lopez, he's a RFA. If you didn't want him, he essentially becomes an expiring contract. If you add in MarShon Brooks, you have the 2nd best rookie from this year, and if the Nets throw in this year's #1 pick it will probably be lottery. So you can have nothing or... expiring contracts to get rid of salary, the 2nd best rookie of this year (so far), and a lottery pick. I dunno, that seems better than nothing, but I'm a Nets fan. I went through this with Kidd a few years back.