Jameer Nelson Expects ‘Playoff Atmosphere’ for Dwight Howard’s Return to Orlando

by March 12, 2013

Orlando Magic fans will get a chance to lustily boo Dwight Howard tonight for the first time since he was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. Magic point guard Jameer Nelson says the atmosphere will be a wild and raucous one. Per the Orlando Sentinel: “‘Obviously, the atmosphere is going to be probably a little turned-up, a little crazier than what we have so far this year,’ Nelson said. ‘Hopefully, we can, as a team, come out and play our game and do what we need to do to try to be successful.’ Nelson added Magic rookies can expect a ‘playoff atmosphere.’ But Nelson also downplayed any friction with Howard. Nelson was asked about Howard’s interview in USA Today, in which Howard said he ‘handled a lot of stuff the wrong way’ last season and said he should’ve been more communicative with teammates about the rumors that swirled around the situation. Nelson responded that he had no ill will toward Howard. ‘What’s said is said, and what happened is over and done with,’ Nelson said. ‘I’m just here trying to look forward and not trying to dwell on the past. The decision was made and things happen, so it’s not like anybody could take them back or anything like that. And me personally, I’m not mad at him for doing what he did. I don’t know. Could things have been done differently? Yeah. But they weren’t. So, me as a person, I just have to move on and try to continue to be successful and do the things I need to do to help the team get back in the position we used to be in.’ Last week, Howard said he had reached out to former teammates after some of them, including Nelson and Rashard Lewis and J.J. Redick, took issue with a comment Howard made to a Los Angeles television station about his old Magic teams. Howard said the statement was misconstrued and twisted by the media — that he was attempting to say that the Magic were always considered underdogs.”