According to ESPN, Dwight Howard is “strongly considering” playing overseas next season, with China as one of his possible destinations. Pretty cool. If Dwight did go overseas, he’d immediately become the biggest American player to step onto the world stage, and would raise his and the sport’s profile wherever he goes.
However, I don’t think this jump would affect the lockout, no matter how many headlines it makes. They’re simply aren’t enough jobs overseas for the vast amount of NBA players. Most international leagues have a limit on the amount of American-born players they can accept, and most international teams don’t have the financial resources necessary to tempt players to risk their health in non-NBA competition.
But Dwight would be the biggest star to ever make the leap, and by doing so, he could help open the door – along with Deron Williams, who’s already committed to play in Turkey – for a number of his fellow stars to make a similar move. Plus, if he did go to China, he’d be the biggest star to ever grace their shores. Currently, Stephon Marbury is the top name to ever take his game there and that’s after he was basically run out of the NBA.
Hell, Quincy Douby – one-time Rutgers star and Kings draft pick – was probably the best American player in China last year. Douby won the unofficial title of “best foreign player ever” in an online poll on Sina.com.cn with 84 percent of the vote and broke the CBA’s single-game scoring record by dropping 53 points in Game 1 of their finals last season.
So, needless to say, Dwight Howard would be a sensation there. Just imagine the highlights he could create. The man’s already a different class of athlete in the NBA. Against China’s weaker competition, he’d literally look like a man among boys.