Smith reiterated how he wants to keep Howard long-term with the Magic and have him sign an extension. However, Howard has the hammer — he can opt out this summer and leave as a free agent. The Magic need to trade him to get anything back and start the rebuilding process over again.
This does not mean a trade is imminent — the Magic are going to take their time to get the deal that works best for them. This could still drag out, maybe just for days or maybe all the way to the trade deadline.
If the Nets are going to do the trade with the Magic, they are going to have to get a third team involved. The Nets previous offer of Brook Lopez and two picks will not get the job done.
Howard’s agent Dan Fegan has reportedly been given three teams he can talk to about a trade — the Lakers, Nets and Mavericks.
Smith said that if he has to trade Howard, he is going to do it with the deal that makes the most sense for Orlando going forward, not just where Howard wants. Here is Smith’s quote to the Sentinel.
“But at the end of the day, we want him here and we want him in a Magic uniform for his career. With that said, we’re going to make the best possible deal that we can make if we have to trade him.”
Dwight Howard played through torn MCL and meniscus in playoffs
Dwight Howard hasn’t exactly been healthy in recent years. He missed half of last season with various injuries, including a two-month stretch from January to March after undergoing a knee procedure. On Thursday, he told a Houston radio station that the knee problems continued after that, and he had torn ligaments and cartilage during the Rockets’ Western Conference Finals series against the Warriors:
Dwight Howard just told us on Texans Radio that he played through a torn MCL and meniscus during the WCF vs the Warriors
It’s a little alarming that we didn’t hear about this until now. Sometimes these injuries can heal without surgery, but Howard can become a free agent next summer, so you would think he would want to get any lingering issues addressed ahead of time. Considering his age (he’ll be 30 in December) and his injury history, this isn’t a great sign. A healthy Howard is the difference between the Rockets being a legitimate title contender and an als0-ran, so hopefully these problems are behind him and he can stay healthy this season.
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