The Dwight Howard trade saga -- which seems as though it will never end -- is giving the NBA a black eye and holding fans, owners and players hostage as the world awaits the final word on where D12 will end up.
Dwight Howard didn't take the nickname Superman from Shaquille O'Neal for nothing. He's one of the NBA's best active players, and probably its best center at this moment. And at 26, he's got probably a full decade of solid basketball left in him.
But the Dwight Howard trade saga has taken on a life of its own. He's not that freakin' good. His scoring and rebounding are solid, but he shot less than 50 percent from the free throw line this past season, and notched just over two blocks per game, despite standing a full 6'11.
So yeah, he's a nice player. One of, if not the very best free agents to hit the market this off-season. But after the endless days, weeks, months of speculation about whether he'll go to the Brooklyn Nets, the Houston Rockets, the Los Angeles Lakers, or just stay with the Orlando Magic after all, he's coming off like a big baby. And not in the fun way, like his teammate on the Magic, Glen Davis.
Instead of gracefully deciding on a team outside of the public spotlight, or allowing coaches and managers to hammer it out with his tasteful input, he's made the Dwight Howard trade saga into a massive circus sideshow. First he got his coach fired, then asked be traded by the Magic, who had just followed his command by getting rid of Stan Van Gundy and GM Otis Smith. That's the loyalty the Magic had to him.
But then he had the gall to ask to be traded, then go back to the Magic, then request to go to the Nets, then say that was the only team he'd play for. And now he's come crawling back to the Magic, who are still pining after him like a jilted lover returning to his or her abuser. All the while, he may be going to the Rockets!! Or the Lakers!!
At this point, who really cares anymore? The Dwight Howard Trade Show has gone on for so long, it's very nearly physically painful to hear or read about it at this point, let alone write about it.
As some astute observers have said, the Dwight Howard trade circus is making LeBron James and his The Decision debacle look like the most deftly-executed PR ploy in the history of professional sports. Hell, I think the most die-hard Miami Heat hater would sign a form attesting to that if it would mean an end to Dwight Howard's dithering and slithering and boasting and whining.
For now, Dwight and everyone else need to stop talking. I don't want to hear his name again until he's at his signing (or re-signing, or even resigning) ceremony. Even if he ends up with the Bobcats.