Deal or No Deal?
For the second time in the early part of 2012, the city of Orlando and the Magic will be at the center of the NBA world. Over the next few days the Orlando Magic will make a decision that will shape the future of their organization by trading, or not trading Dwight Howard. Howard’s desire to leave Orlando has gone back and forth ever since his initial trade request during training camp. What Dwight Howard truly wants to do, only he knows the real answer to that question, no report, no source, only Dwight knows what he wants. But there are a few added story-lines to this saga that has every Central Floridian and NBA fan waiting in suspense. We know that Magic owner Rich DeVos doesn’t want GM Otis Smith to trade Dwight Howard, period. CEO Alex Martins shares the same feelings as owner DeVos does. But GM Otis Smith is open to the idea of dealing Howard, if there is a trade that can bring back young talent and draft picks. The truth of the situation is, well, really nothing beyond that. Of course Otis Smith wants young talent and draft picks in return for Howard, that would be the ideal situation. But when the teams that Howard wants to be traded to, Los Angles, Dallas and New Jersey, don’t have enough young talent and draft picks of much value to offer in return for a future Hall of Fame type player, trading away Howard doesn’t make any sense at all. Magic owner Rich DeVos might be right in this situation, you just can not trade Dwight Howard. To Magic owner Rich DeVos, “trading Dwight Howard would be giving up”, and when you think about it, he’s right. With all that being said, Dwight Howard is being shopped by Smith right now. Rumors are continuing to surface that GM Otis Smith is also trying to bring in players in an attempt to keep Howard in Orlando. The NBA trade deadline is this Thursday March 15th at 3PM EST. Here is a look at some of the teams that could be major players come Thursday:
We all know that there is only one team that has a real chance, if any, of trading for Howard. That team being New Jersey. It might be imminent for the Magic to overhaul their roster which ever way they decide to go with Howard. If the Magic trade Dwight Howard, they will try to include as many remaining multi-year deals they have on their books. If the Magic keep Dwight Howard expect a trade involving a lot of current Magic players for not many players in return. Hedo Turkaglu, Ryan Anderson, Quentin Richardson, Jason Richardson, JJ Redick, and Jameer Nelson could all be on the move. Orlando has been in contact with the Suns about Steve Nash, with the Bucks about Stephen Jackson, and with the Warriors about Monta Ellis.
Los Angles Lakers
The only way Andrew Bynum gets traded is if it’s to Orlando involving Dwight Howard, so it’s not very likely, but is possible. Pau Gasol in the name that has been rumored most. The Houston Rockets and the Chicago Bulls have been rumored to be interested in Gasol over the last few weeks. The Lakers have also been in contact with the Timber Wolves about trading for Michael Beasley and with the Trail Blazers about Raymond Felton. Devon Harris from Utah or Rajon Rondo from the Celtics are the players the Lakers truly want, but don’t have anything unless Gasol is involved.
Portland Trail Blazers
Portland has more or less made any player on their roster available with the exception of All-Star LaMarcus Aldridge. Gerald Wallace, Raymond Felton, Jamal Crawford, and Nicolas Batum could all be on the move.
The rumors and scenarios out of Boston have been puzzling to say the least. Their team is veteran heavy with Kevin Garnett, Ray Allen, and Paul Pierce. But they are fueled by young Rajon Rondo. The Celtics have been rumored of shopping Rondo, either serious trade discussions or out of pure curiosity, but the Celtics have contacted teams about him. It isn’t entirely sure if the Celtics are shopping their “Big 3″, but if you’re shopping Rondo you would think you’re also shopping your older players in Garnett, Allen, and Pierce.
Detriot already has the future they can build around. PG Brandon Knight and C Greg Monroe have shown that they can be the center pieces of a NBA basketball team. The Pistons might be on the verge of parting ways with their big free agent splash from a few years ago when they signed Ben Gordon and Charlie Villanueva. Both players haven’t lived up to the expectations of the Pistons and with Knight and Monroe emerging as the future, it might be time to go a different direction. Tayshaun Price, the lone remaining piece from their NBA Championship team and PG Rodney Stuckey could possibly be on the move if Detroit decides to shake things up.