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Dwight Howard Wants To Be Like Kobe; DeMarcus Cousins Thinks He’s Ready To Be Great

It didn’t officially hit us that the Lakers have Kobe BryantPau GasolSteve Nash…AND Dwight Howard until we saw pictures from the team’s media day yesterday. It must be fun being a Lakers fan. Howard is having himself a grand ol’ time as one of the newest additions. According to ESPN LA’s Dave McMenamin, he spent last night at the Time Warner Cable Sportsnet launch party hanging out with David Beckham. Before that, he spent the day holding court with the media, and even told them he wants to be Kobe. Howard said he has thought about what life will be like once Bryant retires, and that he’s ready to learn from one of the greatest players ever to play the game. He wants Bryant to be tough on him, wants him to teach him the ropes because at the end of the day, Howard wants to be “that guy.” Do we think there will be any alpha dog problems with them this year? We’re not sure, but it is a little interesting to note a certain media outlet just ranked Dwight Howard as the Lakers’ best player, and then Kobe turned around yesterday and told reporters, “I got a question earlier about whose team this is. I don’t want to get into the, ‘Well, we share …’ No, it’s my team. But I want to make sure that Dwight, when I retire, this is going to be his.” … Bryant also said that, on paper, this is the best team he’s ever been a part of. Somewhere, Shaq just wiped his ass with that paper … In the Big Apple, the Knicks opening media day was up and down. Carmelo Anthony noted that he’s done trying to score 30 points a game. All he wants to do is win. For most New Yorkers, that’s a good sign. But upon seeing all of the team’s photos, we still can’t believe the direction they took this summer. Rasheed Wallace was a good player about 153 technicals ago. Marcus Camby was a good player in like ’07, and he’s YOUNGER than another guy they brought in, Kurt Thomas. Jason Kidd was a good player when he last played in the Eastern Conference… in 2008. They signed a 35-year-old rookie (Pablo Prigioni). Think about that. Even James White looks old in his pictures – forehead lines and all – and we didn’t think that would ever happen. We’ve poked fun at the Knicks’ age before, but it needs to be said again: What were they thinking? … Ian Begley tweeted that Ray Felton says he’s entering this season with a “big, big chip” on his shoulder. Yesterday, we must’ve heard five or six different jokes centered around “chips” and “Raymond Felton’s appetite.” … Just across the city, seeing the new-look Nets in their home whites was extra plain. We know Jay-Z and the fellas upstairs wanted something safe and simple, like the Yankees. But Brooklyn should take a cue from another team with a classic uniform – the Cowboys – and just rock the black away joints all year long … There were reports Dwyane Wade was leaving Jordan Brand for Li-Ning. Apparently, it is now official, according to Complex. Is that the biggest “get” the company has ever had? … And while it may or may not have been an attempt to keep up with the Joneses (in this case, Kentucky), Duke is still looking to make some major upgrades to their athletic facilities. Their official website writes that the university plans to raise $250 million to put back into the athletic program. If you disliked Duke before, get used to hating them some more. Duke basketball isn’t going anywhere … Keep reading to hear about the unexpected player who ended up in San Antonio’s training camp …

Unaware that most people believe he’s actually going to be really, really good very, very soon, DeMarcus Cousins continues to play the “he hate me” card, and spent a good portion of an interview with SI.com talking about how he got screwed during this summer’s Olympic Select Team run, and how he doesn’t care who the Lakers pick up. DMC spent the whole summer working on his jumper and his conditioning, and apparently hasn’t taken a break in about two months. The dude is relentless, and has many in the Kings’ organization optimistic that this is the year he breaks out and becomes an All-Star. He dropped over 18 and 11 last year, and even a cautious person could say he’ll go for at least 21 and 11 this year. If he does that, he’ll get his share of All-Star votes … Dallas, another team out West, has a lot of new faces to fit in, and Dirk Nowitzki agrees with Bryant about the Lakers being the best team in the league on paper. It’s going to be interesting to see what Dirk has left – with that roster, he must play otherwordly for that team to consider themselves a threat. Too many new parts, and too many parts that are talented but have never really proven anything in terms of winning playoff games … His old friend, Lamar Odom, is now in Los Angeles and his body looks like he bought out every candy store in L.A. … Meanwhile, news out of Utah is that Enes Kanter actually lost 51 pounds in the last two months. That’s absurd, but Jody Genessy of the Deseret News is reporting it’s true. The big man was even going to allow the media to take pictures of his abs (another super weird media day story), but folks with the Jazz advised him to keep his shirt on … As we wrote yesterday, Andrew Bynum will be held out of basketball activities for the next three weeks to maximize the effects of the German surgery he had this summer. There are reports he has a bone bruise as well. What’s that sound you hear? It’s a bunch of Laker fans pointing and laughing at all of the Philly fans out there banking on Bynum as a savior… knowing the dude has popcorn for knees, and has been healthy for like one full season in his entire career … In the meantime, check out Bynum’s new afro. He’s obviously been chilling a bit too much with new teammate, Nick Young … Somehow Eddy Curry ended up in San Antonio’s training camp on a 10-day contract. We weren’t sure we’d ever see Curry in the NBA again, and definitely figured he’d never end up getting tongue lashings in a camp from Gregg Popovich … Washington also picked up Jannero Pargo to help offset the loss of John Wall … Out of all the new alternate jerseys we’ve seen (the Nuggets’ new yellow alternatives, the Blazers’ new red alternatives and the Spurs’ one-of-a-kind uniforms), which ones do you like the best? … And if you missed it yesterday morning, the Nike LeBron X is coming to Nike iD very soon … We’re out like Kanter’s bad weight.

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