Here we go again: Dwight-Kobe feud fuels Dwight-Brooklyn speculation

Dwight Howard Deron Williams

Dwight Howard and Kobe Bryant allegedly got into an altercation following the Los Angeles Lakers’ 103-99 loss to the Philadelphia 76ers on New Year’s Day, a source told the New York Daily News. The altercation occurred after Bryant alleged that Howard was “soft,” criticisms from former Lakers center Shaquille O’Neal. Howard had to be restrained by a teammate. Kurt Helin of Pro Basketball talk doubts the veracity of the report, as it came from a NY-based reporter about a franchise based in Los Angeles. Ramona Shelburne cites two sources that say the alleged altercation is “simply not true.

The issues between Howard and the 15-18 Lakers since his arrival have been documented; as the article notes, Howard has criticized the chemistry in Los Angeles, with words that seemingly apply to Bryant. Howard has not committed to the Lakers beyond this season, and will be an unrestricted free agent this offseason.

The article speculates that should chemistry not improve in Los Angeles, the Lakers may want to deal Howard, who has said publicly that Brooklyn was his preferred destination. If the Nets were to commit to such a deal, they’d likely have to part with center Brook Lopez, who signed a four-year deal worth $61.8 million this offseason. (Lopez, incidentally, cannot be traded until January 15th, per the rules of the NBA’s collective bargaining agreement).

There’s only one issue with that: the Nets might be getting the worse player in that deal. The 24-year-old Lopez is in the midst of the best season of his career, while the 27-year-old Howard has struggled with production and back issues all season.

Howard is averaging 17.2 points, 12.4 rebounds, 2.6 blocks, and 3.2 turnovers per 36 minutes, with a 20.1 PER; Lopez is averaging 23.2 points, 9.1 rebounds, 2.8 blocks, and 2.1 turnovers per 36 minutes, with a 25.8 PER. For those of you that say Howard’s defense is the game-changer, the Lakers are only 1.5 points per 100 possessions better defensively with Howard on the court; conversely, the Nets are 2.1 points per 100 possessions better defensively with Lopez on the court.

Howard may have the star power — the Nets spent the better part of a year dangling the goofy Lopez in an attempt to acquire him. Should the opportunity arise, they’d likely do it in a heartbeat. But given Howard’s decline in production and his seemingly balky back, it may not be a prudent move.

Read More: New York Daily News — Lakers’ Kobe Bryant, Dwight Howard feuding in LA, Brooklyn Nets and Deron Williams could benefit if team tries to trade big man

Pro Basketball Talk — Report: Kobe, Howard almost came to blows after New Year’s Day loss

Comments

  1. I don’t know, man. As tantalizing as that sounds, it’s not Dwight’s back but his head I’m concerned about. how would he have survived the recent Brooklyn December? Although it could be a case of buying low and we may be able to get Jamison as a throw-in.

  2. Plus you need to surround Dwight with shooters. Although this may allow them to pursue Bargnani, who’d be okay playing next to Dwight, which then may be enough to entice Phil Jax. Maybe a pipe dream but should they swing for the fences here?

  3. no. no No. No. NO!

    dwight howard IS soft. he might be a specimen, but his head is all over the place. hell, he might never regain the only edge he had, which is his freak athleticism. he’s a mess on the offensive side of the ball… i just don’t want to deal with him. hopefully, billy king understands what he has in lopez.

    as far as phil jackson, do not consider this move in that context. if he doesn’t want to come, there will be a good number of top coaches lining up for the job come the end of the year.

  4. The prospect of Dwight Howard in a Nets uniform is not appealing to me. The man is a headcase.

    I’ve followed his antics closely since the talk began about trading Howard to Brooklyn while Howard was still in Orlando.

    “Dwightmare” is an appropriate term for the player. True or not, he’s manufactured a feud with Deron Williams (who has his own mental problems) and he hasn’t meshed in the locker room in Los Angeles.

    The Nets have enough problems without trying to mesh his personality into the white-hot atmosphere of Brooklyn and the New York media.

    Thanks, but no thanks.

    1. Yea, I agree. You know that even though Deron and Dwight were seemingly buddy-buddy, that if things ever went bad like they are in LA here in BKN, there would be major fireworks between those two because of their personalities.

    2. Yea I agree. I know Deron and Dwight were seemingly buddy-buddy, but if things go south like they are in LA, we will probably see some major fireworks between those two.

      I think Deron is sick of Dwight and his immaturity.

  5. Dwight is obviously not a bright dude. He had complete control to come to Brooklyn and blew it. He has a back injury that could turn chronic and has an offensive game that will not age well (put-back dunks).

    Lopez has embraced being a Net like no player in the 20+ years I have been following the team. He is 24, still improving, and could realistically be called the top center in the league this season (top C in PER).
    Squash the Dwightmare now!

    Besides, my wife just got me my new Lopez jersey for Christmas.

  6. I really don’t think we should trade for Dwight Howard. Last year shows how he is just very immature and really only causes more problems than he solves. Brook Lopez has been coming into the zone lately. He has just been too good to trade away for Dwight. The Nets have been very good without him. Brook is really responding to P.J.’s system. He has been coming arund in rebounding. He has been much more consistent.

  7. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO PLEASE GOD NO

  8. Dwight is hard to turn down if we get the chance to get him. If Lopez continues to produce this way though, it’s a tough move. Having D12 certainly turns media attention to Brooklyn for the rest of the season, which is the main goal of the ownership (which I understand and agree with).

    However, if Lopez turns out to be the better player, his contract will be way easier to deal with than Howard’s next year. I think based off contract alone we shouldn’t go for Howard, but rather save the money to find an above average PF. I also do not know how basketball contracts and caps work so I hope what I said isn’t ridiculous.

  9. Now for an actual analysis. Lopez is 5th in the NBA in PER Dwight’s back is a horrifying uncertainty. Dwight is a freak of nature but that’s really it. His offensive game hasn’t developed after eight years in the league. Assume his back problems stick with him (which seems to be a very real possibility if it’s still effecting him) that hurts his athletic edge which hurts his defensive effects and his rebounding. He has been very ineffective this year, by any “dominant centers” standards. The Lakers have only been 1.5 points better on defense with Howard on the court while the Nets have been 2.1 points better with Lopez on the court. Lopez has been tremendous and is three years younger than Howard. Lopez has injury problems of his own but personally I am less concerned about his foot than Dwight’s back. He doesn’t get the credit he deserves but he is the best offensive center in the league right now and the only one who is close is Demarcus Cousins.

  10. No we have built a fine roster and bringing in dwight will force us to completely change the roster…Brook is playing great and we should definitely keep him!!

  11. I’m not opposed to trading Lopez, but not for Howard. When I look at Dwight Howard now, I see the second coming of Gilbert Arenas. We’re just asking for trouble if we bring him here.