Where Do Lakers Go Without Howard?

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HANG TIME WEST – There had never been a day like this in Lakers history, because they don’t get jilted by superstars, as 2007 Kobe Bryant can attest, and they collect future Hall of Famers as franchise anchors at center.

Talk about historical perspective. Fans will spin that the franchise is better off not building around a moody diva who couldn’t stand up to the pressure when Bryant was there to take a lot of the heat, and the media may argue that even one season of awkward first dates with Dwight Howard was better than another month with Andrew Bynum, and that’s all true.

But there is no getting around it: the best player at his position in the world, the planned bridge to the future in their post-Kobe world, the man who filled the demand to have glamour on the court in L.A. has left a hole by choosing the Rockets. There is no spinning that. Howard is likely taking millions less to leave, the exact amount to be determined by whether he makes his official home in Texas, with no state income tax, and whether the Lakers agree to a sign-and-trade. There is no arguing that.

Does this get the Lakers to the future sooner? They need to stop time more than any other team. The idea is to squeeze every last fist-clinch out of Bryant, not let him take a slow ride into retirement, and Steve Nash and Pau Gasol are still on the roster. While management is very protective of the cap space that will come at last in summer 2014, as it should be, anyone thinking about cashing out now better have massive ear plugs if they’re going to be within three area codes of Kobe.

Good riddance to the guy that didn’t have a champion’s heart? Yeah, because he was really dragging down the locker room. The Lakers could barely scrape together two games in a row of proper energy in the 2011 playoffs and got shown up by the Mavericks in the second round with Phil Jackson, the great motivator, as coach. The Lakers had considerable edges in size and experience plus home-court advantage in the 2012 first round against the Nuggets and nearly got bounced, then played with a lack of focus while being eliminated by the Thunder with Mike Brown as coach. There were cardiovascular issues long before Howard arrived.

At least Howard wasn’t Bynum? OK, so there are some positives.

Where the Lakers go from here would have been promising but filled with uncertainty no matter what. They were lacking athleticism last season and even worse now. Until additional roster moves are made, and maybe after, they are back to depending heavily on Gasol, now the starting center. They may have to start two point guards, Nash and Steve Blake, until Bryant returns from his torn Achilles’ tendon. With no legitimate shot at a long playoff run, the money faucet may be turned off.

And that is all before the real uncertainty of the 2014 offseason, the potential second version of LeBron James as a free agent, in case the original version wasn’t enough fun. Dwyane Wade, Carmelo Anthony, Zach Randolph, Luol Deng, Rudy Gay and others could also be on the market as unrestricteds. The Lakers, barring the decision to take on big contracts now, will have the spending power and lure of Los Angeles to be major players. Plus, there is what from 50 weeks away projects as a very strong draft, depending who plays to expectations and comes out.

Management has been thinking about that future for a while, which is why Nash is the only player under contract beyond 2013-14, although Bryant has raised the possibility of continuing to play after the final season on his deal. The Lakers still have a promising future, only now it’s strictly because they’re the Lakers, not because of players in place. They wanted Howard to be part of that, as imperfect as he may be. Now he won’t be, after the day unlike any other in team history.

127 Comments

  1. Pedro says:

    Come october, Houston will be the Clippers of 2013-2014

  2. pftb says:

    Peitrus would be the perfect pickup. We need that on defense

  3. lkm says:

    How funny would it be if the Lakers make it to the playoffs, and knock out the Rockets. Dwight will never ever ever win a title no matter where he goes .

  4. ben says:

    dwight is messed up leaving the lakers after begging. he made a proud franchise begg

  5. John says:

    Basketball is Business… ok bring smart and better big men to lakers — get 2 excellent big men Amere Stoudmaire and
    or Kevin Love and LA will be a very competitive team for this season

  6. P says:

    I don’t care what free agents are available in 2014; as long as stupid D’Antoni is still the coach, no free agent will want to come to the Lakers since they’ll never win a title with this coach!!!!!

  7. L.chil says:

    The Lakers have no chance of seeing the post season.

  8. L.chil says:

    To the bottom.

  9. Marco says:

    Lakers will be fine Baby D12 is not a Champion just a normal player Who made NBA only for his body size and with poor basketball technique. For sure a locker room breaker. You dont want to build your next generation team with a guy like him. LAL now have more time and room to think well for the 2014 season.

  10. Coach151 says:

    I hope no one gets too angry with Dwight’s decision, he’ll people make stupid mistakes everyday… But this time I get to bare witness… Bye Dwight, thanks for nothing, Buddy!

  11. Derrick Scales says:

    Keep me posted on all nba news

  12. Cotton w says:

    Happy for howard to go to texas, he wants to win now he can with out kobe holding him back. good luck superman now u can win as a rocket plus its not a guy color unlike lakers colors.

  13. kobe says:

    This is the real KOBE BRYANT, I’m glad this lame center left the lakers. He cant even do a pick and roll with Steve Nash. Even his back up center Marcin Gortat knows what a pick n’ roll is, Nash made Gortat looked like an All Star center that year. I say we bring in the polish hammer, and the lakers will be a better team.

  14. Arbaz Sharif says:

    Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, and Pau gasol will do fine withou Dwight Howard. Next year the trophy is L.A.’s!!!

  15. Raki says:

    i read guys saying 2014 get new guys and build around kobe? lol. can u rebuild a team with a player who’s about to retire in a couple of year’s as a centerpiece? man oh man. LA fans should think before typing. and no LA cant hire any supertars this season unless trade. what i’m saying is fact not blabber.

  16. Lake Land says:

    Howard is an upset he’s not ready for Lakers he’s not a champion he ain’t getting a championship any he goes. LA shouldn’t let that bring them down focus on Josh Smith Andrew bynum or even Monte Ellis. Lakers are always going to be competitive as long as they have there names says Lakers so 2014 offseason is going to be a rap LA IS GETTING RUDY GAY OR MELO

    • 34yr fan says:

      ….WOW……Rudy or Carmelo……. what great teammates either of them would be !! lol……lol………..your funny!!! Just grasping at straws now…. it is funny to watch when management hasn’t a clue how to ‘build’ a team from within……. the endless auction has finally caught up with the fakers……. maybe NOW they can try to be a Real TEAM for once……built from within….not just a collection of talent from the Other teams in the NBA….

  17. OCLakerFan says:

    I was unsure of Dwight Howard last year. He has been in the league a long time to not have a go to post move that works more than it doesn’t. Not sure how the back would hold up over a long contract. Didn’t know if he had the intestinal fortitude to really lead a team and if he could really stand behind a decision. But when I heard he had six children with six different “baby mommas” in eight years, I was ready to let him go. He’s not a #1…never has been…never will be.

    • 34yr fan says:

      perfect fit for the dysfunctional lakers….what went wrong???? Good luck with the Buss the Younger running that team….into the ground…..Good Luck !!

  18. Ball don't Lie says:

    Lets just wait for the season to start then we will see where the team we cheer for ens up. Regardless how good and individual performance can be, without good backup it will most likely end up In a loss/disappointment.

  19. Raki says:

    They get steve nash and still kobe runs the ball? you hire a legendary facilitator for hitting open three’s?
    kobe is a great player probably the best offensive and versatile player now but, he’s playing superhero ball and is forcing the game come to him and thats not good at all. i’m glad D12 will land on a team that will truly use his strenght on court.

  20. kelly says:

    forget dwight big cry baby a$$… there is a real nba talent in the D league Tony Mitchell .. LAL should take him until kobe returns .. he should come very cheap and will be a hude boast to the bench…. if u dont know him youtube will help ya..

  21. JD bleeds purple n gold says:

    Laker fans, we should stop talking about DH, he doesnt deserve our attention. We are the LAKERS, dont forget that…We don’t worry about losing a player who doesnt want to win big in the best franchise ever, he made his decision and good for him. Next year, we’ll be bringing in the best talent to help us win championships for years to come. I don’t want anyone who is not mentally strong. I want championship minded caliber players. That’s what I’m used to…

    • 34yr fan says:

      ….so exactly how do you GET/BUY –(not ‘bring’ in)– that talent with old players under contract and NO great young players on the squad….Who would want to play there for small contracts……someone who wants to be a TV star in commercials????

    • 34yr fan says:

      …never mind, CPaul has that job for now…..lol…..

  22. Luis27 says:

    Kobe is one of the best period. The Lakers are in the best position for rebuild than anyone. I predict for the next year one of the best team to get a championship, before the Rockets with Howard.

  23. lordkgm says:

    Tank the season and get Higgins! Real talk

  24. MR. MANNY says:

    I just think that Dwight was not the type of player for Lakers to go out to desperate measures for begging him to stay, (billboards and all). i mean why would they get rid of the best and most dominant center of all time, (Shaq) back in 2004 so easily, after when he was so committed to this franchise and won three championships, but you have to beg to a player who is so overrated and just does not know how to play period. As a laker fan i think we will pull off something major if not this year but for sure next summer and all will be just fine…just gotta stay patient for another year.

  25. theholyspectator says:

    realistically speaking, i dont see lakers winning another title. not this coming season or next, i think they are done. this new management has failed to bring in the right pieces to build around kobe. well hey kobs had a wonderful career, i think he retires after 2013-2014 season. and la will go thru its dark rebuilding years, the clippers are the new show in LA now. all great things come to an end

  26. bobbyz says:

    Lakers won’t make the playoffs next year. Lucky whoever owns there draft picks. Laker management really screwed up big time not bringing Phil Jackson back.

  27. Lakers really don’t need a player that can’t share the fame! When the lakers win a championship before Houston then he’ll realize that he made the wrong choice. But leaving the lakers close lots of door for him! Howard was better off with the magic!

    • 34yr fan says:

      Lakers winning another ring with the Kobster is just plain dreaming….TOO many positions to fill….

  28. Silver300chemi says:

    I reckon the lakers should try get josh smith move pau to centre that possible?? Kobe has had a serious injury that I can relate too and at his age he won’t be able to come back as explosive as he was season just gone which was better than the one before that. D12 picked the team I would of picked if I was in his shoes although I wouldn’t of been a little bitch about things all last season. The lakers should also try pick up monta Ellis they r going to need as much of everything as they can get. Lakers should of kept earl Clark to have some back up height up forward. We will just have to wait and see maybe pick up Greg Oden and cross their fingers. Shawn Marion would be a nice pick up also as a small forward or 4. Should b an interesting season!

    • 34yr fan says:

      all with only a few million is cap room……Won’t happen this year, just face it …..the ONE year “experiment” failed and now they are left to pick up the pieces and START OVER !!!

  29. raftroch says:

    There are a couple of options for the Lakers in fre Agency:

    1. Andrew Bynum
    2. Lamar Odom
    3. Dereck Fisher
    4. Luke Walton
    5. Trevor Ariza
    6. Vladimir Radmanovic

    … you know, just to mention a few.

  30. Kdawg says:

    Please let forget Phil Jackson! I agree the coaching hasn’t been good since he left, but get over it! If some of these people think he’s the answer, then I guess the Lakers are doomed. If they can only be successful with him, there’s serious problems. Props to what he did when he was there, but learn to use what they have ( bad decision ) or get a new one( probably not happening) but do you expect him to go there and coach til he’s in his 90′s? Move on!

  31. Bryce says:

    I know a lot of you guys are not gonna like this when I say you need to trade Kobe while he is worth something and get a younger player that is good. Also Pau and Nash need to go. Maybe even trade for early draft picks since this years draft is suppost to be good.

  32. Oscar says:

    DH12 coming to my Rockets we gonna be the best team in the west next season hahaha lakers fans eat that D12 didn’t like y’all and the lakers won’t sign josh smith cuz josh smith wants to play also with the Rockets so wow James harden chandler parsons DH12 Josh Smith all in the starting lineup heck of a lineup can’t wait go be fun

  33. shawn says:

    sign Bynum back he would be as dominate now as he was when helped the 09-10 lakers win their championship and sign Josh smith

  34. Eugene says:

    Although disappointing, Dwight’s decision is very logical. He wants to be No 1 guy, yet wants somebody else to take a last shot. Houston is the most logical choice for that: Kobe is and will be No 1 in LA, Atlanta doesn’t have anybody else to compete, so these teams are out. It could have been Dallas or Worriors, but Dirk will not last. Curry with Warriors is good, but it’s too complicated for Warriors to pull off the deal. So that leaves Houston with Harden. Houston’s success depends on Harden though, not Howard, and his ability to work with Howard’s desire to be seen as No 1.

  35. Jay says:

    Need the Laker fans to understand that they can’t sign anyone this season….. not j Smith, not iggy…. the reason the can already offer a max deal to howard is because he was a laker last season and the cba rules are different for rostered players. Not signing howard does not free up any cap space. They have 2 mil left to spend this season on a vet (maybe kenyon Martin). If they are going to make any moves this season, it will only be through trade, which does not seem likely.

  36. Eaham says:

    The Dynasty Lakers franchise died wth Buss. Welcome to the garbage era of buss junor who will run this team wo the ground.

  37. Ryan A. Smith says:

    The Lakers themselves made their mistakes: Scarce, Metta World Peace, Steve Blake, and Jodie Meeks. All on the 2013 – 2014 roster, all idiotic moves. Quite honestly the Lakers didn’t need Dwight Howard, the didn’t need another superstar, what they needed was a strong MINDED, role playing Center. I know the Lakers are just trying to hide this season, and go big next year with the draft and free agents, but the only two Free Agents I see them capable of signing would be John Wall and Carmelo Anthony. However, Mikey D can not be the coach. And I don’t know how long the Lakers are going to keep him. The draft is also looking promising, but I’m not sure, how good they are at finding players. Except Ryan Kelly, good potential. Anyways, current Free Agents (Lakers options): Chris Andersen C, Ronnie Brewer F, Andrew Bynum C, Derek Fisher G, Monta Ellis G, Jarrett Jack G, Brandon Jennings G, Chris Kaman C, Mickael Pietrus F, Nate Robinson G, and Nick Young F.
    I see three to four one year deals in that group. Most are stretches, but I like being optimistic.

  38. FrankL2010 says:

    Jordan Hill’s heart is bigger than COWARD, and can score free throws. Lakers will be fine next season :)

  39. JohnD_34 says:

    Don’t blame D12 for leaving the toxic Lakers, would’ve had a terrible career sitting in Kobe’s shadow. Why is KB earning so much money? 30 mil a year could be spent on a young(er) superstar capable of leading the franchise to championships (yes la fans, i know how many rings kobe has, but he wont be carrying the team to any more at his age). He is a major reason for Howards departure (let me teach you how to be a winner? are you serious?) and the lakers will never be able to move forward and contend until Kobe retires (too proud to take a paycut).

  40. Michael says:

    A player has the right to chose where he wants to go, thats the beauty of free-agency in the NBA. Everyone said the same when Lebron went to Miami, only Howard didn’t go on national TV to do it. If it wasn’t for who is the worst Laker coach in history, the injury plagued season and Kobe’s arrogance, Dwight probably would of stayed in Los Angeles.

  41. Lebron says:

    Without Howard Lakers had/have problems to deal with … Gasol , kobe , steve nash are old and post their prime .. Gor no likings for Howard but if i am him i will do the same , dont want yo get hung up with the oldies ..

  42. fabre says:

    Kobe is the cause of Dwight’s departure: he won’t let howard touch the ball enough because he thinks he’s MJ and doesn’t have to share that ball. Same story with Shak years ago, but Jackson and Shak were strong enough to keep him under control, D’antoni isn’t.

  43. W/E says:

    LOL, lakers will go 30-52 this season and lose the playoffs. Laker fans will jump on the Clippers bandwagon and stay there for the next couple years lol,Kobe time to retire pal rofl.

  44. PotatoMan says:

    we never needed howard we were better of with bynum watch we are gonna make some moves and we will be back in the playoff picture.we will just try to get John Wall and DeMarcus Cousins and a legit small forward

  45. SumyungGuy says:

    LAL should of hired Brian Shaw when they had the chance.

  46. joe ashman says:

    If one thing was obvious, making the Lakers in2 the Los Angeles Suns w/Nash & D’Antoni was the worst thing lakers mgmt could’ve done. Bounce D’Antoni out, have nash come off the bench to lead younger more athletic types such as J. Meeks & Hill, and sign mid level vets to small contracts. BTW, all those who’re saying to bring back Bynum clearly are one can shy of a 6 pack

  47. rabags says:

    Don’t worry Lakers fans, we’ll still be fine even without D12! It’s time to move on & look forward to a better future! The Lakers’ owner & management have great minds, thus they will proceed with Plan B and make this team a title contender again starting next season. As for all the Kobe haters, you’re just jealous & envy of our main Man. Not the best player right now? Are you even a basketball fan dude? Of all the active players still playing right now, who else has 5 championship rings, top 4 on all-time scoring, scored 81 points (second only to Wilt’s 100), scored more in Knicks’ MSG, multiple MVPs including ASG, even once became Slamdunk champ, & most importantly has the heart of a champion (still playing even with multiple injuries)? Anyone? Maybe you guys are fans of NFL or NHL, not the NBA. Go Lakers!

  48. marco says:

    Lakers need to sign Bynum again,trade Pau for Lamarcus Aldridge,hire Jackson again and go with Triple Post Offense again. I can’t see any other solution to try and put together a potential winning team. They’re the Lakers,they can’t afford a tragic regular season hoping to get good picks in the next draft. They need to be in the playoffs,Kobe wants to be in the playoffs,he hasn’t got the time for a failure of a season.

  49. renz_garnett says:

    i think they will be better without howard

  50. Just KEEP BELIEVING (PURPLE AND GOLD) says:

    JOSH SMITH IS VACANT !! NOT HOWARD?? BUT WHY NOT JOSH SMITH?!

  51. Wilt #13 says:

    Happy to see the Lakers Lose the best Center in the NBA.
    The Fans of the Lakers are the wrost fans in the NBA.How in the hell kobe with his old butt can carry the Fakers all the way to the finals when the Heat are waiting?I mean come on grow up and remember that he is 35,Steve Nash who I am a BIG fan of his but he is 40 years old.
    Howard was the face of the Lakers when he came ,And all of you stupid fans said they won the Championship before the season started and you barly got to the playoffs and got Smashed by the Spurs who got to the Finals and had a BIG chance to win it but we all know what happend.
    Just remember what you said in the start of the season and what you are saying now.

  52. czar says:

    dwight does not make the lakers strong last season, so its not a big loss to l.a. not having him nxt season, not a big deal i think..

  53. BOXER says:

    Bring back BYNUM ,, trade METTA he cannot jump , worst dirty player..bring young talent from development lerague and europe , tall and fast .

  54. jonesthecat says:

    I’m glad to see him go..a man with such a potential power with no watermelons in his pants (just talking about basket, and not about his personal life, as I dunno him) cannot wear lakers’ jersey..maybe, he will find his way in the future but, in this precise moment, it’s just a fantastic member of a plenty-$$$$$-freak-show..yes, fantastic, but “not my cup of tea”, if you know what I mean..

  55. Gary Lising says:

    Howard made the right decision. Houston will give him the chance to be in the finals. No players want to play with Kobe as Kobe is a very rude person. He only thinks of himself only. He thinks that he is the best player today. That’s Karma for Kobe. Lakers will not make it in a playoff next season. I dont think they can win more than 15 games. Kobe is sick mentally

  56. tanibanana says:

    9th seed in the West after 82 games…

  57. Deo says:

    Howard is a curse if he stayed in the Lakers, i would rather see them go to rebuilding mode than having Dwight as a Dramaqueen in LA…

  58. tenby says:

    Howard doesnt want the prospect of having Lebron with him in 2014. Positives will outweight all these Howard distractions. Lakers teamwork and flow will be more fluid if it is anchored by its strong back court. Just get a decent center and a sharp shooting forward then things will be fine.

  59. ezero says:

    .people forget that jordan hill will return nxt season for the lakers. go LAKERS!!

  60. driton says:

    lakers need to go ahead and pick up another free agent and stick with pau , kobe , nash .. who wouldve thought lakers wouldve had such a bad season and then beg for a player .. thats not what we are about ON TO THE NEXT #LAKERNATION

  61. John says:

    it’s absolutely fine without dwight, the laker’s would do even before is not to sign him back and get 2 promising player’s like J.SMITH and A.IGUODALA, but now that IGGY is on the other team the laker’s should SIGN J.SMITH or else they can’t compete to the finals, THEN FIRE D’ANTONI and BRING BACK PHIL. JACK !! he’s way way way way a GREATER COACH than D’ANTONI ..

  62. Nick says:

    Lakers should sign Andrew Bynum or get Josh Smith

  63. J says:

    rebuild

  64. Vash says:

    The Lakers will be fine because they are the Lakers. The lure of the name cannot be underestimated. Dwight did not fit in, and he may have found the right place for himself. The Lakers will find the right players for their team. It may take a couple years, but it will happen. Fans may have to be patient for at least one more season.

  65. Ozzy says:

    What about sign and trade? I dont know the rules of nba but Omer Asik will be a very expensive reserve for the Rockets and he may not be a Howard but I think he can fill the gap of Howard in Lakers squad. I would like to hear your comments about it…

  66. stefan says:

    where the lakers go without dwight???

    the lower regions of the nba

  67. Sourgraping says:

    with the cap space left by Howard… they can sign Bynum now.!!!

  68. Bob Dylan says:

    I can’t believe the hate for Howard. Howard was wasted in the Lakers’ system, does anyone really expect him to stay and be underutilized again?? The Lakers can only blame themselves for this…good move.

  69. Paulo Mendes says:

    IMHO, the much maligned Pau Gasol is a more talented center than D12, at least on the offensive end. If he get’s healthy this season, finally playing in his natural position, we might see great things from him soon. A few more roster tweaks (good players are always good players, whether overblown stars or not…) and the Lakers might be decent. They won’t win a championship, but then neither will Houston. Just remember the Heat, the Spurs or OKC are in the way. And even Chicago if they get a healthy Rose back look better to me.

  70. Ray the Laker fan says:

    Dwight didn’t want to stay, didn’t want to be a Laker and he made the decision to leave. I am fine with that. Howard has been nothing short of being BBQ’ed out there tonight, some of it deserved and some possibly unfair. Nevertheless, this is a closed book for the Lakers and they will move on. I don’t care much at all what happens to Dwight, wasn’t a fan of his to begin with and all I care about now, being a Lakers fan is the Lakers. Next year I predict will be a brutal one and totally expect a disaster even worse than this previous season. They currently have 8 or 9 players under contract and need to be able to create some semblance of a productive bench while being strapped financially due to the luxury tax. Way too many question marks coming in to a season where there is a very real situation that their best player, Kobe Bryant may miss the beginning of the season. There is no telling how effective Kobe will be whenever he does return from this very difficult injury. Kobe, being so competitive, it will pain me to see him try so hard, maybe even too hard, to be productive for this team. His competitive drive and self determination, which have helped him be the player he is may work against him this coming season. God forbid that he pushes himself so hard that he suffers another injury. Safe to say fellow Lakers fans that the 2013-2014 will be the toughest that we will have to endure. I choose this mindset and hopeful to be pleasantly surprised.

  71. Johnkester says:

    Its ok kobe will never win another title.. No matter what he is still a top 10 player of alltime

  72. frank says:

    LAKERS STILL THE BEST!! LET DWIGHT GO AND SIGN SOMEONE BETTER!!

  73. dwight coward says:

    good work jim buss!! your moves are becoming legendary!!

  74. LA-Supporter@Manila says:

    Go get Ellis!!

  75. LA-Supporter@Manila says:

    This is it.. If he goes then let him be.. Can LA get JOSH SMITH??? I think he is a good addition for LA.. They should pick a good PG right now.. Anyway, I still salute LA.. Go LA!!!

  76. Juan Rojas says:

    Get Chris Kaman! Mitch messed up when he first pursued Howard. We could have had Jefferson a center with heart and intensity to win a championship. The Laker organization is really starting to get me worried.

  77. Kei says:

    Kobe did this all to Lakers. If he let D12 start slow(came back from injury) and still concentrate offense on him(under 10 fga?) D12 might stay. Instead he shoots and shoots the Lakers out of the playoffs and got injured. I am no hater so I am not blaming Kobe for the injury and tell him to put his freaking big boy pants on. And don’t get me on Pau, I always like him but fairweather fans always said trade him for Jsmooth etc. Now, d12 is gone and y’all fans hanging on pau? If I am Pau I’ll go as well.

    I am certainly enjoying this ending for Kobe’s career, suits him well.

  78. Enrique Fernandez says:

    Los Angeles Lakers have to rebuild this team. My personal advise: Jobe rest this season, then come back to play 2014-2015 season and retired. Steve Nash, Ron Artest(whatever his name, wheater channel man ) , Paul Gasol there done after 2014 season. Clear salary cap room, signes some good free agetn and star a good team.

  79. Andrew says:

    Just wait and see… Phil will return in 2014 season, and have all that cap space to work with. I can only see Kobe, and Nash that are locks to be a Laker in 2014. So much cap room we don’t need to go after a superstar like Wade, Melo, and most definitely not Lebron. Spend that $$$ and get a overall balanced, and better team. Get a great bench, a guy who can win 6thman of year honors, and a true center. Get a younger, versatile wingman, and once again I will say this bring back PHIL JACKSON. You can forget the Lakers of wanting to win anything as long as D’Antoni is the coach. Mark my words….

  80. E says:

    Playing for LA requires HEART and mental toughness. LA is definitely not the place for quitters.

    • Dan'o says:

      Preach. If you want to good off and joke, if you don’t want pressure, if you don’t want to play with (probably) the second fiercest competitor in basketball history — then rings aren’t for you. Have fun in Houston.

      • E says:

        Dwight still has big respect from me though, because he’s a very skilled big man. But he should be more of a fighter. Winning championships isn’t easy.

  81. Mamba says:

    still winnin the chip

  82. mhan says:

    did they went anywhere WITH him?..he’s useless!..he did not heLp lakers at all!!..he plays for the fame not for the game!..

  83. Nick says:

    Dwight didn’t give LA a chance. The whole team (him included) was injured or recovering from an injury, they had no training camp with D’Antoni, and so of course they never had a chance to gel. You people who think Houston will to win the championship next year are smoking something good! Miami couldn’t even do it the first year with LeBron and the battle-hardened veteran champion Wade – not to mention others along with Spoelstra. There are zero veteran champions on Houston, and I question Dwight’s mental toughness.

  84. swicon says:

    Kobe all this is wrong.

  85. Akeem says:

    “The ring ” is overrated. Only ONE team wins it per year. Teams and players understand this. “They” keep us hyped so we pay the bucks to get “them” paid the bucks. I LOVE the game, but keep it real, “We” the public are most played. Have fun and enjoy.

  86. whitemancantjump says:

    DH12 WAS NEVER LAKERS MATERIAL ANYWAYZ N I BET KOBE GET HIS 6TH RING B4 THE WHOLE ROCKETS TEAM GET THEIR 1ST RING…..

  87. deep says:

    Laker need to rebuild quick, Kobe probably still has few more years left to play at top of his game. Bring Bynum back with few other quality younger player and wait for free agency in 2014. If for any reason Lakers don’t make playoff next year they should have a good draft but I think suns might have rights to their lottery pick next year.

    • 34yr fan says:

      …..Lakers having a good DRAFT……who are you kidding…….they just get retreads

  88. Gary says:

    Dwight is looking for a ring and he just might have a chance for one in Houston. The Lakers have made some bad trades and signings the past two seasons. The one trade that should have happened was squashed by Stern and now the Lakers are really hurting because of poor management by the younger Buss at the helm. I’ve been a Lakers fan for thirty five years and will continue to support them regardless!!

    • Dan'o says:

      Agreed on all fronts save Houston with a real title shot. Hope Jimmy Buss is on the upward slope of his learning curve. One can only wonder what would have transpired if B Shaw got the job instead of Brown- or Phil came back instead of the young player, regular season-geared D’antoni system (which has proven to be average for the 500 coach.)

    • LAKER_LIFE78 says:

      A RING AROUND HIS NECK!

    • j says:

      amen! jim buss fault

  89. Rookie98 says:

    Yes i am sorry to see Dwight go.. I think out all the trades last summer he worked out the best. I wish him good luck and godspeed to him and his family. Hats off to Houston whom in just two short years build a playoff team.

    This will be the first step in a long rebuilding process started when the commissioner. Next year is going to very long. It is going to be one of Kobe s longest . The Lakers will really need .your support. Looking on the board and what is the free agency board I think the Lakers have a couple of three options. Since the Lakers can only afford not star players Here what stands out

  90. Pacquiaoverrated says:

    Kobe will be so happy this season, he can put up shot after shot, average 40pts a game, he can add more scoring to his legendary status, average 30% shooting for the season, while the team gets 20wins and 62 losses overall a successfull season for mr ballhog.

  91. Jeremy lin, james harden, chandler, josh smith(about to sign) and dwight…. wow!!!! they are gonna win a championship next season. dwight is the best center in the nba and made the right move. He does have heart,, look when he was on the Orlando magic. He was hecka dominant and showed heart

  92. Fgue says:

    Finally, Howard make the biggest desission of his life, leaving los Angeles, LA won’t have no more distractions personaly, I never like howard and I think the lakers were better team with Bynum Go lakers, Go!!!

  93. Nick says:

    The lakers will be fine without Dwight Baby Howard. Kobe is still the best player on this earth. Stats don’t mean anything. Pau Gasol is better than howard. Plus steve blake is underrated. On top of that Jamison will come around. We’re all good.

    • swicon says:

      Best Jerk

      • Rockets says:

        Dwight, please do not bring any drama to the Rockets. We don’t need any of your baby whine. Just do your part and stay out of James Harden way. He is far more skillful and should be the main focal, not you!

    • WorldPeace says:

      I am glad you are staying positive! But Kobe is injured and may never return to his regular form. Steve Blake is not underrated, and Pau is way past his prime as with Nash. Looks like five or 6 years before the Purple and Gold see any playoff action. Batter jump on the Clipper bandwagon!

    • they just need a replacement for dwight…and they’ll be fine

    • Pakyaw says:

      Steve Blake is underrated.. Lol!…

    • santana says:

      your delusional. Paul Gasol is NOT better than Dwight Howard, also, kobe Bryant isn’t even on the top 5 best players in the league anymore.

    • meow says:

      lol kobe was never the best player , hes always been caught between better player. mj, ai, shaq, LeBron. lol at kobe

      • allaroundballer says:

        Lol got to agree

      • Me says:

        Great point, thats always why he has so few MVPs. So many people talk about his rings as a measure stick of greatness, but that would also mean that Luke Walton is better than Karl Malone and Charles Barkley combined.

    • J says:

      load of garbage