Wednesday, July 31st, 2013 at 9:10 am  |  17 responses

Mike D’Antoni Finds Dwight Howard’s Move to Houston ‘Mind-Boggling’

Los Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni remains in shock over center Dwight Howard’s free agent decision to play for the Houston Rockets. D’Antoni, who has said that Howard refused to accept his role with the Lakers, can’t understand why Dwight left. Per ESPN: “It’s hard for me to sit here and criticize or even to understand why he left a place like L.A.,’ D’Antoni said. ‘That’s kind of mind-boggling a little bit, but that’s in his DNA and what he wants to do.’ [...] ‘Everybody has got to make that decision,’ D’Antoni said. ‘You can debate it all you want. Only Dwight knows. Obviously he didn’t think he would be as happy here as he will be in Houston. That might be the case and he had to make that decision. There will be a lot of speculation, we tried it, it didn’t work out and we go forward. So be it. You hate it. Dwight’s one of the better centers in the league and it would have been a long-term thing, but I looked at it like, ‘OK, you don’t have Dwight but you got Pau [Gasol].’ So, we’ll see. In the short run, we’ll see what happens. In the long run, obviously 10 years from now Dwight might still be playing and maybe Pau is retired, but everybody has got to do [what's best for them].’ [...] Just how good the Lakers can be will likely hinge on the health of Kobe Bryant, who is still recovering from Achilles surgery he underwent in April. ‘I wouldn’t put anything past him but nobody knows. We’ll just have to wait and see in a month or two. Having said that, Kobe is a competitor and once he is back on the floor — Father Time does march on and things happen — I don’t know if you can say he’s going to average 25 [points], he’s going to average 30, he’s going to average 18, nobody knows, but one thing I do know he’ll give it his all and it will be interesting to see. It will be a heck of a battle, that’s for sure.’ There could also be a bit of a side battle between D’Antoni and Bryant to limit the amount of minutes the 18-year veteran guard will play. Bryant averaged 45.7 minutes in the seven games leading up to his Achilles tear. ‘He’s very determined in what he does and we’ll work together on it, hopefully,’ D’Antoni said. ‘We’ll see. But that will all be determined when we see how he feels and where he is and where he is with the team and all that. We’ll work through those issues and try to do the best that we can for him.’”

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  • Ishmael Jenkins

    I find him sitting in on a meeting set up to convince Dwight to stay where he reportedly didn’t say a word to the man and then making these comments mind-boggling. LA is no longer enough on its own. Get rid of Jim Buss. Until that happens, guys aren’t going to be flocking to the Lakers. Things have changed.

  • spit hot fiyah

    well you can always blame their DNA i guess

  • spit hot fiyah

    “In the long run, obviously 10 years from now Dwight might still be playing and maybe Pau is retired,” i think you can skip the maybe part right there

  • Feez_22

    Funny how Mike D’antoni is saying all of this when he clearly was one of the reasons Dwight left. Dwight even said so in the ESPN interview a few days later.

    The lakers need to remove a couple of people from their positions. Jim Buss and Mike D’Antoni are these people. Not only are they not up to lakers standards at what they do… they are totally out of the loop with the reality of a lot of situations with the lakers.

    Mike D’antoni basically makes pau a 6th man last year to play Earl Clark more minutes. He then treats Earl like total dogcrap in practice, making earl his whipping boy. Earl leaves for mike freaking brown, a guy that didn’t even play earl when mike was the lakers coach. Why? Money is one reason but not wanting to play for mike D is another. Now pau is back to being the lakers center basically (kaman isn’t a PF btw) by default and is probably already sick of mike d’antoni.

    … Don’t even get me started on 2014. I am no psychic or guru but why would a primetime free agent want to go to a jim buss run lakers? i assume mike d’antoni would be let go before they start recruiting so the high class recruit can pick a coach with kobe and pau. However, if they do not (which would be the jim buss thing to do), why the hell would a lebron or melo want to play there?

    Lebron likes defense. Lebron wants to be a DPOY one day. mike doesn’t coach defense. eliminated.

    Melo might like the brighter lights of LA to play with his good friend kobe. Prob is Melo absolutely hates mike d’antoni. eliminated.

    Damn… this post escalated quickly LOL. Just get rid of jim buss and mike d’antoni, Lakers.

  • RayJr

    Or as Will Ferrell in Blades of Glory would say, “mind bottling”.

  • http://twitter.com/niQknacks niQ

    I thought D’Antoni was going to say it was mind boggling cause Dwight refused to run the PnR in LA, but that’s what they also run in Houston. (I’m pretty sure he did say that in another interview.)

  • shockexchange

    So you mean to tell the Shock Exchange that all those billboards begging Rent-A-Center to stay didn’t work? Note to himself: “Never take dating advice from the LA Lakers.”

  • shockexchange

    LOL. It’s not enough for D’Antoni to act like a jilted lover, but he also has to throw shade on Rent-A-Center’s current relationship. *Welp*

  • http://twitter.com/niQknacks niQ

    I… wait, what did I just read?

  • shockexchange

    In the past D’Antoni has implied that if Rent-A-Center was not happy with the pick-and-roll in LA then he may not be happy in Houston since they run the same style offense.

  • http://twitter.com/niQknacks niQ

    Yea, that’s what I was saying. But Dwight will probably revert back to the PnR and say Houston’s offense was a much better fit. lol

  • http://soundcloud.com/tray-8 T-Ray

    For someone who reportedly didn’t have anything to say during the sitdown with Dwight he sure has a lot to say now…

  • Caboose

    Other things Mike D’Antoni finds mind boggling:
    Players who want to play defense.
    Set plays.
    That he was fired. Twice.
    The human aging process.

  • shockexchange

    Why Rambis will be pulling a knife out of his back next year this time. “Et tu Kurt … Et tu?”

  • Caboose

    Et tu Phil? Et tu Mike Brown? Et tu Jim? Et tu Kobe? Et tu Pau? Et tu every Lakers fan ever? Et tu Jerry’s ghost? Y et tu Shock Exchange???

  • shockexchange

    LOL. Who’s this Kobe guy you refer to on here?

  • Ugh

    They’ll have to adjust their offence to putting the ball on the block more. Howard is a lousy PnR player and he’s worth too much money to the franchise.

    Meaning Lin will be on the bench or traded, which absolutely nobody in the world will care about. Oh, fickle fortune, why do you taunt young Jeremy so?