Dwight Howard, AKA “Here We Go Again”

So a superstar has toiled in a second-tier market for a second-tier franchise his entire career. After years of early playoff exits with no ring to show for it, the superstar’s contract starts coming to a close. When asked by reporters what his next move will be, the superstar in question gives circuitous answers: he loves the franchise, he’s at home in his city, he’s happy.

But (there’s always a but)… The superstar in question has made his intentions clear. He’s becoming a free agent at the end of his contract. He would like to stay, but if the team doesn’t improve, he’ll skip town or demand a trade.

Huh. This all seems vaguely familiar.

I’d love to have Dwight Howard on the Nets. I would. I think Dwight and Deron makes the Nets instant contenders. One more decent wing scorer with a focus on the team concept – the Jason Terry, if you will – and the Nets are almost set. Surround that core with the right mix of role players who are willing to sacrifice to win a championship, and they’re competing with any team in the Eastern Conference.

Looking back at history, there’s a good chance we’re in store for a painful few months of commentary. “Will he?” “Won’t he?” “Dwight Howard to LA!” “Dwight’s throwing games, he wants out!” “Dwight loves Boston!” “Dwight’s leaning towards staying!” “Dwight Howard said the word Brooklyn!” “But he was just talking about Brooklyn Decker!”

The circuitous chain of curiosity will drag on, because this decision isn’t an immediate one. I’m not complaining, though. Patience is a virtue, and the last time the Nets did this, they ended up with the biggest payoff of all. I just hope Billy King can go two-for-two.