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Kobe Denies He Called Dwight

Despite reports in the Los Angeles Times, HoopsWorld and RealGM, Kobe Bryant denies to Peter Vecsey that he told Dwight Howard he'd be the third option with the Lakers, a story often cited this weekend to suggest that the Nets are firmly in the lead for Howard's services.

After a series of exchanges where Bryant's responses sounded a lot like non-denial denials, Bryant finally offered, "It's not true."

While Vecsey attempts to downplay the story, dismissing it as "an internet report", the story first broke in the Los Angeles Times almost three weeks ago. Veteran Laker beat reporters MIke Bresnahan and Broderick Turner wrote that "Bryant had at least one in-depth phone conversation with Howard recently" and that Howard "came away feeling as if he wouldn't be the Lakers' top option ... it's Bryant's team."