It's over! Dwightmare is officially over!
Now that it's in the past, we can relive the whole process using SB Nation's StoryStream, which covers the Dwight Howard saga all the way from his Magic days. Or, we could also move on and take a peek at the news that's actually happening now. With the summer's biggest domino tilted, some serious movement on the free agent front has begun.
Here's a roundup of what happened on one of the more action-filled Friday night - Saturday morning news cycles in the history of any sport, with several deals going down in a time period that's usually pretty quiet.
- The Lakers were set to bail on Pau Gasol if they needed space for Dwight Howard's contract, but the Spaniard is safe in Los Angeles. Ramona Shelburne of ESPN Los Angeles wrote the team has no intentions to move or cut Gasol. Of course, Kobe Bryant seemed to be in on this when he Instagrammed a picture of himself and Gasol hugging with several motivational phrases in Spanish after Dwight Howard's decision was made.
- As for their plan going forward? Alex Kennedy of Hoopsworld indicates that the Lakers intend to return to dominance once again by trying to convince LeBron James to take his talents to Hollywood after this season. It seems like a longshot, though. James has everything LA could offer and more in Miami, and if he leaves, the most bandied about destination is a homecoming to Cleveland, not the Lakers. And who knows how many more seasons his would-be running mate, Kobe, has left in the tank.
- From last night, in very quick succession: Jose Calderon signed a four-year, $28-million deal with the Mavericks, O.J. Mayo signed for three years and $24 million with Milwaukee and Paul Millsap will get $9 million over two years with the Atlanta Hawks.
- We had heard rumblings of an Omer Asik for Ryan Anderson sign-and-trade. Marc Stein of ESPN shot it down, hard, saying the Pelicans have no interest in Asik, whom the Rockets are furiously trying to trade now that Howard is in the fold.
- A pair of vets potentially hooking up with Western Conference contenders: Kenyon Martin is reportedly drawing interest from the San Antonio Spurs after proving he still has some spring in his legs at 35 years old, per Jared Zwerling. The Spurs made their bank this past year on random unknown bench players turning into solid performers, rather than sliding former stars into bit roles -- Tracy McGrady was on the bench, but all the way at the end of it -- but one could imagine Martin as an up-tempo backup to Tim Duncan and Tiago Splitter.
The Thunder are looking at Derek Fisher. They have brought in the point guard who won multiple championships with the Lakers for depth and shooting midway through each of the past two seasons and although he has lost a step ... or eight, he's still an occasionally potent shooter. Ken Berger of CBS reports the Thunder are just one of several options he's considering, but because he's had some experience with the squad and they seem to value his leadership, it seems like the most likely option. It would be a bit of a surprise to see him sign at the beginning of the year after taking time off each of the past two.
- Less big news: the Hawks added Demarre Carroll in addition to Millsap. They'll pay the 6'8 Mizzou product who averaged 6.0 points per game this year with the Utah Jazz $5 million over two years. While Millsap is a pretty conventional power forward and a strong rebounder, Carroll can fill the backup role and, considering he's like a very poor man's Josh Smith, he kinda fits.
The Pacers nabbed Chris Copeland after watching the Knicks' stretch four light them up in the playoffs. Copeland might be the worst defender on the Pacers, but he has legitimate NBA talent as a scorer. At two years, $6.1 million, he's a nice find for the money. His three-point touch will let him stick in the league after spending years overseas in Europe. Copeland became superfluous in New York with the addition of Andrea Bargnani, who, despite a very different body type and career path, will fill the same type of role, and the Knicks used their free agent money to sign Pablo Prigioni instead.