- Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel has the backstory on Dwight Howard’s back troubles: “Howard missed games on April 1 and April 3 because of his back problems, but then he played two more games, including on April 7, aggravating his back in the process. Five days later, he practiced with the team and once again aggravated the injury. That’s when he went to Watkins for a second opinion.”
- Orlando Magic team doctor Craig Mintzer and Dr. Robert Watkins agreed that surgery was necessary for Dwight to repair a herniated disk in his lower back.
- It’s also been reported by Robbins that Hedo Turkoglu is not expected to return for the playoffs. Turkoglu is still trying to recover after undergoing surgery to repair facial fractures.
- With Dwight out for the rest of the regular season, that means other players for the Magic will have to step up in his absence. Like Jameer Nelson.
- Orlando’s hope of making noise in the postseason has been dashed now that Dwight is done for the year. Right now, the Magic are projected to face the Indiana Pacers in the first round. With Dwight, an upset series win was a strong possibility against the Pacers. That would have given Orlando a crack, likely, with the Miami Heat in the Semifinals. And given that the Magic have proven they can compete against the Heat, it would have been an interesting series to see unfold. Not anymore.
- Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated with a must-read report on the current state of Dwight and Orlando: “Some within the Magic thought Howard was exaggerating his back problems earlier this month. They thought it was a power play by a player who over the last eight years has been given nothing but power. It turns out it wasn’t, that Howard’s back was worse than anyone really knew.”
- Lost in all the noise — Dwight will miss the 2012 Summer Olympics, too. Who will replace Dwight as the starting center of the Olympic team for Team USA?
- Despite Dwight’s season-ending injury, the Magic are still in line for the No. 6 seed in the Eastern Conference.
- Dwight tried to rest and rehab his injury, but it didn’t work.