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How close to a buyout for Dwight Howard?

Charlotte Hornets v Chicago Bulls Photo by Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images

Sam Amick, of USA Today, was on AudioBoom podcast Monday night and suggested that buyout discussions between the Nets and Dwight Howard were not moving very fast ... and Howard’s prospects are not yet that clear.

“His buyout isn’t done yet. His timing isn’t great. They haven’t completed the buyout. I need to go back and look, but I believe Adrian Wojnarowski reported that the trade with the Brooklyn Nets can’t go down until July 6. But I do know for a fact, independent of that, they haven’t even agreed on a number [for the buyout]. That part still has to get resolved.”

Amick also reported that Howard wants a contract in excess of $5 million and would like to play for a powerhouse where he has a chance to win a ring. Amick recorded the podcast before DeMarcus Cousins signed with the Warriors ... thus eliminating that destination.

“As far as his prospects, he’s like DeMarcus [Cousins] in the sense that he’d like to play with LeBron [James]. That’s definitely on his radar....

Dwight Howard wants to play with the Warriors and he would want it to be on the mid-level, that $5.3 million. It’d be a huge paycut for him, but he’d like to play for the Warriors. But barring a change there, I don’t see it happening.”

That of course would suggest that Howard might not be willing to give up more than $5.3 million in a buyout. The Nets would like him to give up more, like $8 million. Amick does think that Howard will wind up somewhere.

“New Orleans and Washington are both possibilities from there,” he said. “He’s going to have an NBA job, but he’s one of those guys whose reputation precedes him and that’s not helping his cause.”

Would the Nets simply waive him if there’s no agreement on a buyout and/or he can’t find work? Unlikely. Would the Nets play him? Even more unlikely.