Dwight Howard wants to play for the Brooklyn Nets. We know this very well by now, and it’s hardly breaking news anymore, despite what any ESPN experts want to claim. And that’s fine, he’s a big boy and can play wherever he pleases, as soon as his contract with the Orlando Magic is up. That would have been yesterday, too, if Howard hadn’t pulled his bizarre series of switcharoos before this past season’s trade deadline, ultimately agreeing to sign his one-year extension.
But yesterday it was reported that Howard has not only demanded to be traded, but he also reached out to the NBA Players Association to help him force his way out of Orlando, because – as ESPN reported – he was being blackmailed by the team. Now Howard, who has been very quiet since his back surgery in Los Angeles, is speaking out. Sort of. Basically, he’s clarifying himself and then returning to secrecy.
Howard also denied an ESPN report that he had told people Orlando Magic officials had “blackmailed” him into forgoing the early termination option on his contract that ultimately cost him his free agency this summer.
“I never used the word blackmail in reference to any of my dealings with the Magic,” Howard said. “I never said that. It’s defamatory and it’s inaccurate. I know what blackmail means and any report that I used the term incorrectly is inaccurate.” (Via Yahoo!)
Here’s what I don’t get – Howard had to have watched “The Decision” and witnessed the backlash of fury and scorn that LeBron James went through. So how could he have let this all happen? There have been whispers of Howard making comments like, “If only people knew what I was going through” and he’s right, we don’t. Maybe tell us? Fill us in just a little so every basketball fan on the planet doesn’t think you’re the biggest dick in the history of the league.
Or we could just read this story about Howard and his best friend Jameer Nelson having to be separated at a Magic practice last season, and that’s how we can paint our portrait of the league’s best center. Whatever he wants.