The ongoing saga of Dwight Howard‘s babyish, “should I or shouldn’t I?” gimmick appears to be over. Nets fans, break off those season ticket plans, pull back on the “Dwight Howard” customized Nets jersey orders, slow down on the future title predictions. He’s not coming… at least for right now.
Late last night, Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.com reported in an exclusive interview that Howard would indeed waive his early termination option and agree to stay with the Magic through 2012-13:
“Man, listen, you know my heart, my soul and everything I have is in Orlando,” Howard told RealGM. “I just can’t leave it behind.”
Dealing with such a big decision was new territory for Howard.
To help with the process he sought advice from people he believed had his best interest in mind. All the while, his heart remained in Orlando. While he wanted to keep his options open, Howard’s intentions were never to alienate his teammates, coaches or general manager.
The circumstances, however, spiraled out of control and turned into something he never wanted to happen. Howard was very remorseful for the situation that he created, but eager to turn it around and show everyone who has been hurt by his actions how much he appreciates them and how sorry he is for Wednesday’s events.
“I have gotten some bad advice,” Howard said. “I apologize for this circus I have caused to the fans of our city. They didn’t deserve none of this. I’m sorry from the bottom of my heart. I will do whatever I can to make this right and do what I was put in Orlando to do.”
Howard is just too nice of a guy. In a way, that makes him more real. He says the fans deserve a “better hero” in Orlando, and plans to make that a reality. The problem though is to become a “better hero,” Howard needs a championship. And name me the last time an alpha dog won a title after showing everyone he cared enough about your feelings to let them dictate his life? No one in Dwight’s position, with the power he so willingly gave away, should be the victim of “bad advice.”
But when you allow a fanbase, or even an agent, to dictate or influence you to the point that an entire state, an entire league is held at gunpoint while you tinker with your feelings, the ensuing storm creates nothing but anger and frustration.
Stephen A. Smith made the comment on SportsCenter this morning that Dwight Howard is not LeBron James. He doesn’t want to be a pariah. While he loves Orlando, Howard still felt an attraction to the Nets. All signs and reports pointed to that. But if he was going to leave, he wanted to leave with everyone loving him. That’s not realistic.
At least now, we can get back to basketball. Howard has answered the question of where he will play next season. Now, I want to see him answer another question: Does he have what it takes to lead Orlando to a championship?
What do you think of this whole thing?
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