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March 1 Next Big Dwightmare Date

Brian Schmitz of the Orlando Sentinel reports that the Magic will ask Dwight Howard for a definitive answer about his future on March 1 and if he still wants to leave, they will begin pursuing deals for the 6'11" All-Star center.

March 1 is significant for two reasons: it's the first date that the 130 free agents signed before the season can be dealt and it comes after the end of All-Star Game in Orlando. The Magic will be active on the trade market, reports Schmitz, either trying to improve the club enough to convince Howard to re-sign or make deals for Howard in a package that includes Magic players.

Bottom line, he writes, the Magic will need Howard to tell them what he wants to do or as an official said, "It’s where the rubber meets the road." Why not now? Some days Howard is more open to staying than other, Schmitz contends.