The Houston Rockets and center Dwight Howard are scheduled to meet shortly after the beginning of free agency on Monday, Jeff Goodman of ESPN.com reports. The team is expected to send a contingent including executives, players and Hall of Fame big man Hakeem Olajuwon to meet Howard.
Teams are allowed to begin speaking with free agents at 12:01 a.m. ET on Monday, marking the real beginning of what could be an exciting offseason.
Howard looks prepared to make the most of his free agency after an up-and-down year with the Los Angeles Lakers. Though staying in L.A. could yield Howard a significantly larger contract this summer, moving to another franchise might be the preferred career move for a number of reasons.
The Rockets will only be able to offer Howard a four-year, $88 million deal, far short of the five-year, $118 million contract he's positioned to receive from the Lakers, but it's been reported Howard would prefer to make a change. The Mavericks are considered another prime suitor for Howard's services, but the chance to play with James Harden and a solid Rockets core could give Houston the edge.