Yes, the Dwight Howard trade saga is still going on. A day after the Orlando Magic said they were no longer listening to offers for the five-time All-Star, he claimed that his request to be traded had not actually been withdrawn.
Howard can opt out of his contract in July and Orlando general manager Otis Smith had given him and his agent permission to discuss trades with the Dallas Mavericks, New Jersey Nets and Los Angeles Lakers. Then on Wednesday the Magic told teams they were no longer listening to offers for their star center. When that announcement was made many thought it meant Howard wanted to stay in Orlando beyond this season.
Apparently that assumption was premature.
Howard had the following to say about his current situation:
“There’s no back and forth. It still stands and we know what’s going on. I talked to Otis today. What we talked about it gonna stay between me and him.”
Howard also discussed his relationship with Smith and how it stands moving forward:
“Right now me and Otis are gonna continue to try to make this team better. And I’m gonna do my part on the court. That’s the reason I’m here. To get our team better and to make myself a better leader for this team.
“And we’re doing great. Practices are going great, guys are coming in and they’re focused – nobody’s playing around. We’re having fun, but at the same time we’re getting the job done … There’s not need to talk about trades or what’s on ESPN or in the newspaper. There’s no need to bring it on the court.”
It sounds like Howard is trying to make the best of the situation but we can all read into his comments and know what’s really going on. He wants out and he’s going to make sure that happens. He just won’t be a public about it as Carmelo Anthony was last year.