There were rumors Sunday of a confrontation between Kobe Bryant and Dwight Howard, rumors since denied by Howard and writers who cover him and the Lakers. But things in L.A. are not good and Mike D'Antoni is now openly hoping that the Lakers will make the playoffs, even with a roster with as many as four future Hall of Famers.
Chemistry is one issue and so is Howard's back. So that raises the question: If Howard were to tell Laker GM Mitch Kupchak that he's leaving (and giving up about $25 million) this summer, would Kupchak try to trade D12 before the February 21 deadline? And would the Nets make their fourth try at him? Chad Ford and others have reported that Howard still longs for Brooklyn. It's not a given that the Nets would push that hard for Howard. With his continuing back issues and the distraction created by the two previous attempts to acquire him (not to mention Brook Lopez's solid performance this season), the Nets might think twice about it.
But Stefan Bondy writes the Nets would have to consider it.
Reaction at the Nets shootaround Monday was predictable. Said Deron Williams, “Are you serious?” Asked how the team would handle it, D-Will responded, “I don’t know. Hopefully it doesn’t become an issue.”
- Bryant, Howard feuding in LA, Nets and Deron Williams could benefit if team tries to trade big man - Stefan Bondy - NY Daily News
Report of Kobe spat fuels D12-to-Nets spec - Mike Mazzeo - ESPN New York