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Did Nets Dodge Bullet With Howard?

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Dwight Howard will undergo surgery to correct a herniated disk Friday morning in Los Angeles, ending what has been a devastating year for him on and off the court. He will miss the rest of the regular season, the playoffs and almost certainly the Olympics in July, said his agent.

It also will almost certainly cause both the Magic (and Nets) to re-evaluate long and short-term plans. While Howard says he'll return to form, a herniated disk is a serious injury for a big man. The Nets were ready to pursue Howard again this off-season if Howard declined to sign an extension with the Magic, an option that appeared more and more likely.

Now, with Howard's condition uncertain, the Nets interest in him will have to be uncertain at least until training camp.