Expect Rumors to Heat Up

There was no way that the Orlando Magic were going to trade Dwight Howard before the All Star Game. It was in Orlando, and the reaction of Howard returning as an all star for a different team would have depleted the crowd for this weekend’s events. Now, they have until the March 15 trade deadline to get something in return for the big man.

A possible move would be to call his bluff. He would absolutely make more money if he stayed in Orlando, about $30 million more than anywhere else. Other endorsers are weary of Howard because he doesn’t come off as genuine. It was evident if you watched his speech to the fans before the all star game tonight.

Via trade, the best trade partner resides in Chicago. With a package of bigs (Boozer, Noah, Gibson, Asik, overseas 7-footer Mirotic), a wing (Deng, Watson, Korver, Brewer), and the Charlotte Bobcats draft pick that the Bulls have:

In 2012, the pick is lottery protected. If the Bobcats are in the lottery (which they probably will be), they get to keep the pick. If not, it is the Bulls‘ to use.

In 2013, the pick is top-12 protected. If the Bobcats are in the lottery and the pick is in the top 12 picks, they keep it. If not, the Bulls receive the pick.

In 2014, the pick is top-10 protected, and in 2015, the pick is top-eight protected. The only way that the Bulls could get a top-eight pick in the draft from this Charlotte pick is if they don’t receive it until 2016, when it is not protected.

New Jersey (soon to be Brooklyn) Nets is Howard’s #1 destination (reportedly). He may prefer them because Jay-Z is part owner. Perhaps they are friends. We did see the Nets go all out to impress Howard when Orlando played at New Jersey last week. Maybe he wants to play with Deron Williams, but he may leave via free agency. And the bets trade chip is a young but injured Brooke Lopez. They don’t have many assets to make a deal, but we shall see.

If GM Otis Smith decides to ship him, it may be to the Western Conference and it is understandable. Maybe they get a big man from the Lakers, but GM Jerry Buss has taken the franchise into a different direction. That’s another team that will have more rumors heating up as the deadline approaches. One thing is certain, that Hedo Turkoglu and his inflated contract will get packaged with Howard if he is dealt. Concerning the Lakers and Bulls, Turkoglu would fill the void made by Lamar Odom or possibly Luol Deng.

Via free agency, there aren’t many teams that can make a run for Superman’s services. There is the risk of losing him for nothing, but perhaps the Magic prefer to rebuild with cap space and through the draft. We will soon have answers to all the questions, including this rumor.

   

The Magic are denying a rumor that they have reached a deal with the Lakers and Raptors involving Dwight Howard.

Howard, Hedo Turkoglu and Jameer Nelson would go to the Lakers, while the Magic would receive Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol and possibly Jose Calderon.

Alex Martins, CEO of the Magic, confirmed to the Sentinel that the rumor is wrong.

Courtesy of realgm.com