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Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011 at 11:30 am  |  47 responses

Orlando is ‘the Most Attractive’ Place for Dwight Howard


by Marcel Mutoni@marcel_mutoni

Each game the Orlando Magic play offers fans and media with a fresh opportunity to hold a referendum on Dwight Howard’s future. When the opponent is the New York Knicks (and the NY media), things get that much more intense (and nauseating.)

Last night, Dwight was asked repeatedly about what he’ll do once he hits the free agent market in the summer of 2012. Basically, the New York press wanted to know if he had his eye on Manhattan or Brooklyn.

For what it’s worth, Dwight says Orlando remains his top choice. From the Sentinel:

“Orlando’s the most attractive place for me right now,” Howard answered, a smile on his face. “They have a sexy new arena, a beautiful franchise, nice banners around here and been in the top four in the Eastern Conference for the past four years. Yes, Orlando’s the most attractive place right now.”

Howard added that he doesn’t necessarily believe he needs to team up with other superstars to make a run at the championship, the way Amar’e, Carmelo, Wade and LeBron have. For Howard, it’s more important to build a solid team around one established franchise star.

While this may be encouraging news for the Orlando Magic and its fanbase, the reality remains that Dwight isn’t quite convinced that this team can win a title. Until they can prove otherwise, there will always be reason to worry about him eventually leaving.

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  • http://www.officeanything.com/ Phil

    I spend most of my days working on my office furniture store and reading news about the Magic. I have to say that after a game like last nights, Dwight would obviously come out and say this. I’d love for him to stay with Orlando, but unless we can unload some bad contracts in trades for expiring contract players next year…. we may be out of luck. I’d like to see Dwight have the opportunity to recruit a few people himself. He is the one player in the NBA that creates a mismatch for ANY team.

  • MikeC.

    I wonder why the Magic didn’t keep force-feeding the ball to Dwight last night. He was getting whatever he wanted whenever he wanted. If they’d kept doing what they were doing in the 1st quarter, Dwight would have been guarded by Anthony Carter by the 4th.

  • David C

    I feel like Dwight has a pretty good supporting cast, we just don’t get enough recognition. All the media is all over Lebron and Melo, but I like being the underdog. Dwight needs to stay in Orlando and bring this city a Championship instead of being a follower, Dwight is a leader.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Because the Magic never forcefeed the ball to dwight. Last year he averaged like 11 shot attempts a game.

  • Bluntz&40z

    Does anyone else feel like dwights portrayed by the media as being the nicest, friendliest and most innocent superstar? That would all change if he left Orlando, there would be a real reason for people to be disgruntled with him. I don’t see it happening. Although he did steal the superman moniker from Shaquille O’Neal, and Shaq fled Orlando. However, Dwight Howard doesn’t have any platinum selling hiphop Albums, and has never rapped with Rakim, so I don’t see him leaving. If he did, it would be in a classier wAy then LeBenedict Arnold. And no, I’ve never been to Cleveland. Why leave Orlando though? Dwight’s been in tv commercials with Charles Barkley, he doesn’t have a ring. Just a gold Medal. Ah options, must be nice…..

  • fruizm

    hey Phil…is that your furniture store? Where can I contact you? I would like to ask you a couple of questions.

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com just bcuz

    thats until 2012 when the lakers are calling

  • http://nobulljive.com/ Enigmatic

    I forgot why, but I was looking at a list of most populated cities in the US.
    Now, when we think of small-market teams we usually think of like the Milwaukee Bucks or Sacramento Kings.
    Imagine my suprise when I found out Orlando’s population is like half of theirs.
    Even Anchorage, Alaska, where yours truly is currently typing this comment, has a bigger population.
    Don’t know how that’s relevant to this at all.
    Just thought that was weird as hell, I was always thought Orlando had like, at least a population of 600,000.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    orlando is not as big as most think.. but there are not many places in the US that can compare to the beauty of orlando.. awesome place

  • http://nobulljive.com/ Enigmatic

    Yeah, with Disney World and Universal Studios and all that, I doubt it has a “small town feel” to it.
    I was still surprised to find out they only have a pop. of like 220,000 though.

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/bigk4444?feature=mhum kenneth chavis

    Dwight should go to Cleveland.

  • ClydeSays

    If Orlando stays competitive, I can see him staying. But if he goes to free agency, he’ll be offered stupid money by any team with cap room…

  • EnnBee

    The population of the city of Orlando is small because the city area itself is small and doesn’t have much residential area.

    While not large by any stretch, according to Neilsen, the Orlando market is 19th with 1.46 million people. Sacramento is 20th with 1.39m. Milwaukee is 35th with 905K.

    Smaller NBA cities include Sacramento, Portland, Charlotte, Indianapolis, Salt Lake City, Milwaukee, San Antonio, OKC, Memphis and New Orleans.

    Oh, and Anchorage is 150th.

  • Paps

    He should stay because people will come to him. Best big man in the game for the next decade.

  • http://nobulljive.com/ Enigmatic

    @EnnBee – ha, thanks for clearing that up.
    Yeah, I didn’t think Anchorage would ever land on any “big market list”. There’s really nothing up here.

  • http://youtube/user/Uncle05Sam Earl

    These idiot reporters need to stop asking players where they’re going.

  • 80y4n

    Nice one dwight, my respect for you increased tremendously.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Hossy

    of course he is saying that. i call BS dwight

  • http://zengu.com Max

    I really hoped he won a chip in 09 so he wouldn’t have any pressure to leave Orlando for a chip. :(
    Stupid Kobe

  • http://nobulljive.com/ Enigmatic

    Yeah, this is basically what LeBron told Larry King about Cleveland last summer.

  • mj23

    I don’t believe him. He’s going to follow Shaq’s footsteps and go to the Lakers.

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    Who cares.

  • theDankerNuggets

    i don’t even think Orlando is to him he just doesn’t want to go through the whole Melo type fiasco

  • bnets

    Brooklyn Bound

  • hoodsnake

    If he keeps up racking tech the way he is doing he is not gonna be very useful as the best center in the League

  • http://zengu.com Max

    @Hoodsnake
    Blame it on the refs, they hate him, capt Jack so much.

  • EnnBee

    I will say that all of this attention over where players will go is kind of ruining the NBA. It’s March, people. The thick of the playoff hunt. Last night’s Knicks/Magic game was a pretty good one yet so many of the stories are about where players are going. There is even that stupid DWade commercial about “let me out of here.” It feels like every conversation about the NBA these days is about what team will lose or get what player in 2 years as opposed to what happened in an actual game or even what might happen in the playoffs THIS year.

  • Shem

    He’s right. Orlando is attractive. He s got a great arena, fan base, contract, GM willing to spend money and make the team better and good coaching staff (Ewing is a great assistant). The problem with the Magic is they get away from the mismatch Howard is and sometimes chuck up shots. They are the best 3 point shooting team in the league (maybe Suns?) but they really need to run more of the offense through Howard. Inside out kinda thing..

  • Purple Reign

    The summer of 2012 is going to be deja vu and summer of 1996 all over again for Magic fans.Like the OG Superman who left Orlando and went to Hollywood & came to the Lakers to win rings, the big media market, and LA life style. Dwight loves the media. He’s already said if he could choose 1 player to play with it would be Kobe. He said during the all star break this year in LA. The Lakers that same summer can easily clear cap space to get him. Andrew Bynum’s contract is worth $16 million and they have a team option on him that same summer. Lamar Odom’s contract is worth $8 million and they also have a team option on him. Luke Walton’s horrible $6 million a year contract will be in the final year that season and the Lakers could easily find someone to trade him to for a team looking for an expiring contract. So yeah brace yourselfs Magic fans and Laker hater for when Dwight goes Hollywood and signs with the Lakers in the summer of 2012.

  • Purple Reign

    Just also look at it this way. Your Dwight and it’s free agency in summer 2012. The phone rings you got Magic Johnson, Kobe, Dr. Buss, Jerry West, and Kareem all calling you up and recruiting you to come to LA and sign with the Lakers for a max contract which they can offer him.I don’t care who you are but that is hard as hell to turn down a chance to win multiple rings and then become the face of one of the best franchises in all of sports when Kobe & Pau are retired. Then you look at the Magic roster and by then Dwight & the Magic will probably be coming another 2nd round playoff exit.Also the Eastern Conference is stacked as hell with Boston, Heat, Bulls, and the Knicks all with better chances at winning a ring within 5 years. I just don’t see Dwight turning down the offer to play Kobe and Pau Gasol.

  • http://zogs.com zogs

    I REALLY DONT UNDERSTAND WHY PPL R TALKING ABOUT THE SUMMER OF 2012
    THE ENTIRE WORLD WILL BE RUN BY ALIENS
    Y’ALL REALLY NEED TO THINK ABOUT WHAT YOUR SAYING

  • Riggs

    kneel before zogs

  • Michael

    co sign zogs, were fuked…

  • http://nobulljive.com/ Enigmatic

    What are y’all talking about?
    We’ll be aight in the summer of 2012!
    It’s December 21st of that year when we’ll be f*cked.

  • http://www.stonesthrow.com Michael NZ

    Lets begin speculating where Kevin Durant will go in 2017!

  • Big C

    …..why would he go to the lakers in 2012?
    By then Kobe and pau will be old, still good but old. Bynum is the lakers best young player and plays Dwight’s position. I think Dwight will go to OKC or the Nets, if D-Will is still there. Correct me if im wrong, but doesn’t that make more sense than an old Lakers team? If L.A is his goal, a developed Eric Bledsoe and Blake Griffin with Dwight would be a good team.

  • MusketeerX

    D Howard in LA with the Clips is imposing. I could not imagine a team getting a rebound agains them.

  • http://slamonline.com biged

    there should be a rule of when reports can ask certain questions…..

  • mike

    i dont buy any of this talk. who would have thought lebron would leave clevland? hometown kid with the best regular season record for so many years…. basically these players are young an rich , all the talk about “WINNING” is bs , i think they jus want to experience life. if your young an rich , i doubt your thinkin about living in a nice city, raising a family , etc. etc. they prolly wanna go out an have a good time , clubs, parties, women… think about what you wanted most when you were in your mid 20′s… an imagine that with millions of dollars. if dwight stays, cool. if he leaves , i understand his want to experience new things… only 1 team in the NBA can win a title, how come every player who doesnt win, wants to leave…

  • knicksvet82

    ^good idea…

  • RunNGun

    I’m imagining Dwight Howard in a Knicks jersey right now standing next to Melo, Stat, and Chris Paul. Make it happen, Walsh… to the KNICKS!

  • http://hoopistani.blogspot.com hoopistani

    so Dwight mentions “sexy new arena and nice banners” in Orlando before saying ” and been in the top four in the Eastern Conference for the past four years.”
    Oh, ok

  • http://www.youtube.com/user/officerbarbrady what

    Come home to ATL Dwight!

  • http:www.makeyourfreethrows.com Dan Dickau

    Before all this big name players make the jump to a team they “think” will be better, take a look at the 2010 Cavs vs the 2011 Miami Heat:

    http://www.makeyourfreethrows.com

  • Ali

    Man I’m so sick of this resent rash of teams blowing up their rosters year after year or getting rid of their star for this reason or that reason. Orlando was just in the Finals the other year, they should have kept that team intact! Playoff wins and losses, and a team that has been through tough playoff wins and losses counts for alot. Teams need to stay together 2,3,4,5 years and be battle tested. But in this punk a** age of win NOW, and not hold your ground and fight for it, (however long that takes, maybe you win it all, maybe you won’t but at least you gave us some great memories. Stay in Orlando Dwight!

  • roman

    Orlando is a big man camp for the Lakers-

  • dsleepy

    cosign earl.

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