Nets Working On Dwight Howard Trade Options In Advance Of Deadline

The New Jersey Nets are reportedly working on multi-team trade options for Dwight Howard even though the Orlando Magic haven't put the All-Star center back on the market.

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NBA Trade Rumors: Nets Working On Dwight Howard Trade Options

The New Jersey Nets are working on potential multi-team Dwight Howard trade options even though the Orlando Magic have not yet signaled that the team will trade the All-Star center before the league's March 15 trade deadline, reports Sports Illustrated's Chris Mannix (via NetsDaily). The Nets received permission to speak with Howard about trade possibilities earlier this season, and are considered to be one of the few teams that the center would prefer to be traded to.

But the question remains as to whether the Nets have the assets to pull it off after mortgaging a good portion of the franchise's future to land Deron Williams a year ago. Brook Lopez is considered to be the centerpiece of any Nets' package; Lopez made his season debut last weekend after a preseason injury that required surgery kept him out of the team's first 32 games. The Nets would need to rely on their status as a preferred destination for Howard to gain favor from Orlando.

For more on the Nets, check out NetsDaily.

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Dwight Howard Adds Clippers To Trade Wish List, According To Report

Dwight Howard's trade wish list has grown by one team, reports Chris Sheridan of SheridanHoops.com, and that team is the L.A. Clippers. The Clips reportedly join the New Jersey Nets, Dallas Mavericks and L.A. Lakers as teams Howard would be open to signing a long-term contract with should the Orlando Magic elect to trade him before he can become a free agent in July.

Sheridan also reports that the Nets are quickly losing their status. New Jersey is just 3-10 as Brook Lopez is recovering from knee surgery and the squad around Deron Williams has struggled mightily.

Howard has been fuzzy about whether he would listen to pitches if the Magic choose to trade him to a team not on his wish list before the March 15 deadline; the Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks have been rumored to be considering making a pitch to "rent" Howard for the rest of the season, then convince him to sign long-term in the offseason. The Magic could also decide to keep him past the deadline and hope a deep playoff run and a higher allowable contract offer keeps him in Orlando.

For more on the Clippers, visit Clips Nation. For more on the Magic, visit Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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Dwight Howard Trade Rumors: Atlanta Hawks Interested In Magic Center

Most of the Dwight Howard trade rumors were squelched when Orlando Magic general manager Otis Smith announced he was taking his All-Star center off of the NBA's trading block, but there's little doubt he'll eventually be traded out of Florida before becoming a free agent. SB Nation's Tom Ziller noted earlier this month that it's basically a decision of when, not if, regarding the Magic's trading of the face of their franchise.

The Magic are apparently thinking along those lines behind the scenes as well, according to ESPN's Marc Stein. Stein reported late Tuesday night that Orlando is looking for a package that included established veterans, something Howard's hometown Atlanta Hawks have apparently offered while the New Jersey Nets continue to wait.

Sources told ESPN.com that the aforementioned Hawks, meanwhile, engaged Orlando in trade talks for Howard earlier this month with an offer believed to be headlined by $124 million guard Joe Johnson and swingman Josh Smith. You have to figure that the Magic, though, would insist on Al Horford if such discussions ever got serious.

The Magic have until March 15 to decide whether to trade Howard or allow him to test the free agent market next summer, but it would seem to be in their best interests to get as much as possible for their All-Star centerpiece. With the Hawks now known to be involved in the discussions, it'll be interesting to see who else pops up before all is said and done.

SB Nation is your spot, by the way, for all of the Dwight Howard trade rumors.

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How Long Can Magic Put Off Dwight Howard Trade Talks?

Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski reports that the Orlando Magic have ended trade talks involving Dwight Howard. The Magic hope to have some early season success and convince Howard -- who has always maintained that he loves Orlando -- that he can compete for championships there. Howard is due to be an unrestricted free agent in July 2012 if he doesn't first sign a contract extension or pick up the 2012-13 option on his current contract.

How long can the Magic wait to trade him, and what are the chances Orlando's hold on Howard will improve compared to its diminishing leverage?

First, we shouldn't assume that Orlando's leverage will necessarily diminish; the Denver Nuggets received a package from the New York Knicks in February as good as one they would have gotten in November in the Carmelo Anthony derby. Why? Because the Knicks remained desperate for a second star to pair with Amar'e Stoudemire. 

The New Jersey Nets have lost bids to grab Tyson Chandler and Nene; chances are now that Kris Humphries returns on a lucrative, short deal and the team reaches for a small forward to replace Travis Outlaw. While Deron Williams was banged up, the Nets went only 7-18 after the All-Star break last season. This probably isn't a playoff team without a significant upgrade on the roster. So the Nets will be desperately after Howard in March as heavily as they are now. (The trade deadline this season is March 15.)

The L.A. Lakers, Howard's other major suitor, will likely also remain enamored of the center, provided that a downgraded roster doesn't run away with the West. (No one expects them to, barring a Chris Paul trade; Lamar Odom is a huge loss.) Howard is so attractive a piece that any team he signals a willingness to remain with long-term will move the skies and Earth to land him. That's not going to change.

But will the Magic become the juggernaut Howard apparently needs them to be? Remember: though the Magic flamed out quickly in last season's playoffs, the team has averaged 55.5 wins per season over the last four years, better than any franchises but the Boston Celtics (58.5) and L.A. Lakers (59). The equivalent of a 60-win team in the shortened season will be one with a 48-18 record -- if Orlando can look like it's heading in that direction, will Howard commit? The Magic did win 59 games in each of the 2009 and 2010 seasons, and Howard didn't seem particularly committed long-term then.

That's the question that seems unsolved for Orlando. Otis Smith has built a huge winner centered around Howard. He bet huge on Rashard Lewis, then Hedo Turkoglu, Jason Richardson and GIlbert Arenas. The team is capped out even after accounting for the amnesty provision, which excised Arenas' albatross contract. Few consider Glen Davis an upgrade on Brandon Bass, let alone an upgrade that can push the Magic above the Bulls, Heat and Celtics. Other fronts have been quiet. Is there a killer deal that can turn this team into a true titan in 2011-12? It looks unlikely, unless there's an odd way to send Chris Paul to Orlando.

But given the fact that the Magic will be able to get the same packages offered now in March, there's no harm in holding out hope and praying Howard decides he loves Big Baby and Mickey Mouse.

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Magic Reportedly End Dwight Howard Trade Talks

The Orlando Magic have ended trade talks involving their All-NBA center Dwight Howardreports Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski. The Magic had allowed Howard permission to speak to three teams -- the New Jersey Nets, Dallas Mavericks and L.A. Lakers -- within the last few days, but apparently hope the team will perform well enough that Howard decides to sign a long-term extension or a new five-year contract next July when he becomes an unrestricted free agent.

If the Magic continue to hold steady on Howard, it's a huge blow to both the Nets and Lakers, the two leading candidates to acquire him. The Nets, who struck out on the top big men on the free agent market, were dangling Brook Lopez and draft picks. The Lakers were expected to make Andrew Bynum available.

The Magic have otherwise been mostly quiet in free agency, retaining Jason Richardson and traded Brandon Bass for Glen Davis.

For more on the Magic, visit Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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Dwight Howard Trade Rumors: Blazers' Gerald Wallace Added To Blockbuster Talks Between Magic, Nets

Dwight Howard trade rumors have not been quite as rampant as the issues circulating around moving Chris Paul, but the Orlando Magic big man is certainly a hot commodity as the truncated training camps mosey into full gear. The latest reports indicate that the Portland Trail Blazers have emerged as trade partners in what looks to be a four-team deal that would allow Howard to end up with the New Jersey Nets.

The Magic would reportedly receive Gerald Wallace from the Blazers and Brook Lopez from the Nets, among other pieces, in the latest deal as reported by ESPN's Marc Stein and Chad Ford.

The Magic would send the albatross contract of Hedo Turkoglu, along with Chris Duhon, to New Jersey while  receiving future draft consideration, according to the ESPN tandem, while Portland would receive multiple first round picks for their role in the trade.

SB Nation's Tom Ziller talked about the Nets' need for Howard now, as opposed to later, as they attempt to become a power in the East.

The Nets are in a pickle, considering that Deron Williams is months away from unrestricted free agency and the team as constructed is heading for a sub-.500 season. (The team went 7-18 after the All-Star Game.) The Nets have relatively little in the pipeline: Derrick Favors and the draft pick that became Enes Kanter were sent off for D-Will, and while a bad season would give the Nets a good pick in a great draft, selling Williams on, uh, John Henson or Perry Jones could be a quixotic effort. The Nets need to ensure that Williams re-signs; to ensure that Williams re-signs, the Nets need to get better now.

Keep tabs on the Dwight saga in this StoryStream and at the wonderful Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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Nets Pushing Hard For Dwight Howard Trade With Possible Four-Team Deal, According To Report

The New Jersey Nets are renewing their strong push to land Dwight Howard in a trade with the Orlando Magic, reports Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports. The latest talks center around a four-team deal that would allow the Magic to pick up another strong asset in addition to Brook Lopez, who the Nets are offering at the core of their package.

Howard has been granted permission by the Magic to speak to the Nets, Dallas Mavericks and L.A. Lakers. He is set to become an unrestricted free agent in 2012. He hasn't been shy about flirting with the idea of leaving Orlando, with a reported trade request to the Nets the most obvious sign.

The Nets still have plenty of cap space on account of striking out in the team's pursuits of Tyson Chandler and Nene. Chandler signed with the New York Knicks on Saturday, and the Denver Nuggets held on to Nene on Tuesday.

For more on the Nets, visit NetsDaily.

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Dwight Howard Trade Request Comes As Relationship With Otis Smith Deteriorates

Dwight Howard requested a trade this weekend and the process of finding a workable deal has been unfolding since. But Howard also felt the need to explain himself on Sunday, sitting down with ESPN's Brian Windhorst to clear the air about his time with the Magic. Howard's chief complaint, it seems, is Magic general manager Otis Smith's inability to pull-off personnel moves he requested.

Howard told ESPN he went to Smith numerous times with trade ideas and other personnel requests he felt would strength the team, but the moves never came to fruiting. But, Howard maintains, he doesn't want to be a general manager.

"I'm not a GM, I never said I wanted to be a GM," Howard said.

"What I said was I want to be involved. Everybody has a right to be involved. ... I should want to be involved. I should want to say 'hey, this is what we need, this is what we need to do.' If I didn't care, I wouldn't have said anything. Obviously I care enough about this team that I've asked them and I want to be involved. If you don't like something, you'd just walk away. If you want to be involved you'd do anything you can. If you don't get it, what do you do?"

Howard and Smith haven't talked since last Tuesday, before a trade was demanded.

Keep tabs on the Dwight saga in this StoryStream and at the wonderful Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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NBA Rumors: Bulls Want In On Dwight Howard Trade Talk

Dwight Howard gave the Orlando Magic a list of three teams he'd like to be traded to ahead of his 2012 free agency: the New Jersey Nets, L.A. Lakers and Dallas Mavericks. Despite its exclusion from that list, the Chicago Tribune's K.C. Johnson reports, the Chicago Bulls would like to get a chance to make a pitch for the reigning Defensive Player of the Year.

The Bulls have young pieces like Joakim Noah that could pique the Magic's interest, but the team would first have to convince Howard to open up his list a little. He reportedly requested a trade to the Nets (who will move to Brooklyn for the 2012-13 season); New Jersey has offered Brook Lopez and two first-round picks. Orlando is said to be cool on that offer. The Lakers would be assumed to make Andrew Bynum and/or Pau Gasol available in a Howard deal, though a Saturday trade sending Lamar Odom to the Mavericks could leave the team with a hole at power forward if the team deals for Howard.

For more on Chicago, visit Blog-A-Bull.

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Dwight Howard Has Permission To Speak To Lakers, Nets And Mavericks About Potential Trade

Dwight Howard and his agent can talk to three teams -- the L.A. Lakers, Dallas Mavericks and New Jersey Nets -- about a potential trade with the Orlando Magic, report Yahoo!'s Adrian Wojnarowski and SI.com's Sam Amick. There had been massive confusion late Friday as to whether the Magic had indeed allowed Howard to engage other teams in potential deal-making.

Of course, Orlando could elect to reject offers from those teams and either keep Howard for the balance of the 2011-12 season or trade him to a team that the All-Star center is not particularly excited about. The Magic have been said to be cool on the Nets' offer of Brook Lopez and two first-round picks. L.A. is believed to be dangling center Andrew Bynum. A potential Dallas package in a complete mystery on account of the Mavericks having so few high-interest young pieces.

Keep tabs on the Dwight saga in this StoryStream and at the wonderful Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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Dwight Howard Denies Meeting With Nets' Management

On Friday, reports suggested that the Orlando Magic were considering filing tampering charges against the New Jersey Nets after an alleged meeting between All-Star center Dwight Howard and Nets' owner Mikhail Prokhorov and general manager Billy King in Miami this week. Howard, who can become a free agent in 2012 and has not committed to staying with Orlando, denied those reports later on Friday.

In the past, the league has threatened massive fines and forfeited draft picks to teams found to have tampered with players under contract. The last high-profile tampering case came a year ago as the Cleveland Cavaliers sought to prove that management with the Miami Heat made illicit contact with LeBron James well ahead of his free agency in July 2010. But no charges were brought, and the investigation fizzled out.

For more on the Nets, visit SB Nation's NetsDaily. For more on Howard and the Magic, visit Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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Dwight Howard Allegedly Met With Nets Owner Mikhail Prokhorov, Leading Magic To File Tampering Complaint

NBA.com's David Aldridge reported Friday that the Orlando Magic are pursuing tampering charges against two teams for alleged contact with All-Star Dwight Howard, who remains under contract through the 2011-12. SI.com's Sam Amick reports that the two teams in potential trouble are the New Jersey Nets and Houston Rockets.

The Nets' role, Amick reports, comes from a purported meeting on Thursday between Howard and New Jersey owner Mikhail Prokhorov.

Under traditional league rules, team officials are not allowed to speak to players under contract with another franchise without explicit permission. One assumes that though the NBA was under a lockout until late Thursday, those rules remained in place. If Prokhorov did meet with Howard without permission from the league or the Magic, NBA precedence suggests massive fines and even draft picks could be the penalty.

The nature of the Rockets' alleged tampering remains unknown.

For more on the Magic, visit Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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NBA Rumors: Dwight Howard Reportedly Asking For Trade To Nets

Dwight Howard will ask the Orlando Magic to trade him to the New Jersey Nets, who have re-emerged as the top suitor for the All-NBA center, reports ESPN's Chris Broussard. He reports that the Nets continue to offer Brook Lopez and two first-round picks, but didn't indicate whether the Magic had become more willing to listen to offers.

The re-emergence of the Howard rumors come as the L.A. Lakers' trade for Chris Paul was vetoed by NBA commissioner David Stern. The Lakers were expected to target Howard in addition to Paul, and could push for the center with renewed vigor now that it appears CP3 won't be put on the table any time soon.

Howard can become a free agent in July and has indicated fairly openly that he will at least consider signing with a team in New York or Los Angeles. The Nets are scheduled to move to Brooklyn ahead of the 2012-13 season.

For more on the Nets, visit NetsDaily.

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Dwight Howard Trade Possibility Left Open By Magic GM Otis Smith

Orlando Magic general manager Otis Smith will not rule out trading Dwight Howard if the All-NBA center won't commit to a contract extension, reports Josh Robbins of the Orlando Sentinel.

Smith talked to the media after the NBA announced that team executives could begin talking to players and agents in anticipation of the start of free agency on December 9. Howard can't become a free agent until July 2012, but rumors have swirled after the center made comments about his uncertainty on whether he'll commit to Orlando. The Magic, no doubt, have a maximum-value extension available whenever he wants to sign it.

Smith didn't exactly say he plans to put Howard on the market, and said that he wants to take to the star about the issue instead of reading the media tea leaves. But he was candid in saying that all options would remain open.

"I think you have to look at everything," Smith told the Orlando Sentinel when he was asked if he'd consider trading Howard. "I don't think you can take anything out of consideration."

For more on the Magic, visit Orlando Pinstriped Post.

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