The Los Angeles Lakers potentially landing Dwight Howard has been going on for longer than the Magic and Lakers were probably anticipating. From Howard demanding a trade to Brooklyn only, then non-committal to signing an extension with the Lakers to reports of him committing to signing an extension and everything in between, it has been a long drawn out process for the Lakers. You would have to wonder is acquiring Dwight Howard worth all this trouble at this point?
As it stands right now the Lakers have a team that is, by most accounts, the 2nd best team in the Western Conference behind the Oklahoma City Thunder. Getting Howard would essentially result in the Lakers losing C Andrew Bynum, and with how far this Howard saga has drawn on it seems that it is not worth the risk. Bynum is a younger and, whether it is in a year or two, he will challenge or surpass Howard as the best center in the NBA.
Also, Howard is not upfront about what he wants to do, and that should effect whether a team, especially the Lakers with an established center, invest in Howard potentially for just one season. Currently in the NBA, Howard is the best center but not much space separates him from Bynum. Having Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum in the frontcourt for the Lakers, even if for just the next two seasons is better than gambling on Howard to sign an extension with the team.
At this point for the Lakers, the safer bet is to keep Bynum and hope he matures both emotionally and physically to be the face of the Lakers franchise moving forward. Any potential deal that would require the Lakers to trade Bynum and Gasol is too much of a risk, because that is the strength of the team. Having two 7-footers in the paint is a major advantage for any team because it covers flaws on the defensive end and gives an edge on the offensive end in the paint. Howard would fit well with both Nash and Kobe, but long term the Lakers may be left with no frontcourt if he decides to leave LA in free agency and that is just not worth the risk.
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