Stephen A: Howard Gives Nets Edge

Feb 22, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Nets fanse prior to game against the Orlando Magic holding up pictures of New Jersey Nets guard MarShon Brooks (left) and point guard Deron Williams (center) and Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard (right) at the Prudential Center. Orlando Magic defeat the New Jersey Nets 108-91. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE

In an interview on ESPN Sunday, Stephen A. Smith takes a swipe at Marc Stein's report on Deron Williams limiting his decision to the Nets and Mavs ("First of all, I didn't think that was news. We've always known that"), then launches into a rant on why the Nets have the "edge" over Dallas in the D-Will Sweepstakes.

The Lakers weren't on that list because they would have to make a trade and the New Jersey Nets, now the Brooklyn Nets, are not willing to make that trade. You have to give the Nets the edge from this perspective: They've got cap room, they've got some young bodies as well and they still have a legitimate shot at getting Dwight Howard. Granted, the Orlando Magic own Dwight Howard's rights for the time being because he opted into his contract. This summer, he opted into his contract before the trading deadline because he was scared they were going to trade him to L.A. but Dwight Howard wants to be in Brooklyn. That's where he wants to come. He doesn't want to be anywhere else. He doesn't want to play for the Lakers. He doesn't to play for Chicago or anybody else. He wants to be in Brooklyn and as long as Dwight Howard makes sure, insists to everyone that matters, ultimately it's something that can be facilitated, get the job done.

He concludes by noting, "If you have Deron WIlliams and you have Dwight Howard, suddenly the East looks incredibly more interesting because Deron Williams is a baller!" He also says that (unlike Howard?) Williams will be a "man's man" when it becomes time to announce his decision.

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