— Houston Rockets (@HoustonRockets) January 12, 2015
Dwight Howard knows Junior’s Cheesecake, though maybe not exactly by name.
Three seasons ago, the Nets fanbase was aflutter with hope, at the idea of perennial All-Star center Dwight Howard teaming up with then-All Star point guard Deron Williams. The two entertained the thought of playing together for over a year, even having dinner together when Howard came to New Jersey. Fans cheered louder for a pre-game hug between the two than for anything that happened during the game itself.
Today, in what will be Dwight Howard’s first game against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center, the arena he could’ve called home, Howard had a chance to reflect with reporters about what might have been.
From ESPN’s Mike Mazzeo, Howard admits “things didn’t happen the way (he) wanted them to”:
“Like I said, everything happens for a reason. There was a point in time where I thought this [Brooklyn] was the best place for me to play basketball. I guess things didn’t happen the way I wanted them to.”
“I think when I opted in that kind of changed everything,” Howard said. “But like I said, Houston’s a great place. I love where I’m at. I found a great home here.
“Even though I won’t be playing here in Brooklyn, I have a lot of friends and family here, so it’s always fun to visit those people.”
Howard had been injured the previous two times his teams faced the Nets in Brooklyn.
“I think it’s gonna be fun,” Howard said of playing in the $1 billion arena. “I’m looking forward to it. I was thinking about that earlier when we started going out to the floor. I know a lot of people from Brooklyn, so it’s always fun to come back here and see a lot of people that I know. I think I have to go to [Junior’s] Cheesecake.”
Howard originally referred to the iconic restaurant on Flatbush Avenue as “Jerry’s” Cheesecake. Maybe if he’d worked a little harder to get himself here, he’d know its name by heart.
ESPN New York — Dwight Howard readies for Brooklyn debut