After the Los Angeles Lakers missed out on signing DeMarcus Cousins, they need to revamp their frontcourt without Julius Randle in the mix.
We previously talked about how notable veterans were interested in teaming up with LeBron James on the Lakers, and it turns out Dwight Howard is one such veteran. USA TODAY’s Sam Amick confirmed this rumor to Alex Kennedy on a recent episode of The HoopsHype Podcast.
“He’d like to play with LeBron,” Amick said. “That’s definitely on his radar.”
It’s a bit of a bizarre fit considering the last time Howard played for the Lakers, it was far from a stellar experience for both parties. Despite high expectations, his previous tenure with the team was a major letdown for all involved.
That year, head coach Mike Brown was fired after just five games and the Lakers were eventually swept in the first round of the Western Conference postseason. Howard actually led the league with 12.4 rebounds per game, while also averaging 17.1 points and 2.4 blocks.
Last season, the big man was still serviceable on the court, averaging 16.6 points and 12.5 rebounds per game. But his teammates reportedly didn’t like him, which has been an issue for Howard at many of his NBA stints (along with his issues accepting a lesser role on offense).
As Amick mentioned, it’s unclear if the Lakers would be willing to add Howard to their roster for next year once he reaches a buyout agreement with the Brooklyn Nets. Amick pointed out that the 32-year-old and the Nets have yet to agree on a buyout number, so that still has to get resolved before the big man can do anything.
While he can still put up impressive stats, adding a potential headache on and off the court could be more trouble than it’s worth for James and the Lakers. Several of his previous teammates, including Kobe Bryant, were less than enamored with him in the locker room.
Howard might be interested in signing with Los Angeles, but it’s unclear if that interest is mutual. If he doesn’t return to the Lakers, Amick pointed out that the Washington Wizards and New Orleans Pelicans are among the teams that have expressed interest in Howard.