Bulls likely to get cold shoulder from Dwight Howard
BY SETH GRUEN For Sun-Times Media March 8, 2012 11:04PM
Dwight Howard on whether he would want to be traded to the Bulls: “Nah, it’s pretty cold” in Chicago. | Tom Cruze~Sun-Times
Updated: April 10, 2012 11:51AM
Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard wouldn’t comment on where he’d like to end up if he is traded by the March 15 trade deadline.
But comments he made at his team’s shootaround Thursday at the United Center indicate that the Bulls appear to be out of the running.
Howard hasn’t even thought about coming to Chicago.
“Nah, it’s pretty cold here,” Howard said.
Weather aside, Howard might have a problem with sharing the spotlight with Derrick Rose.
That gives credence to reports that Howard has been urged by Adidas to stay away from Chicago. Rose and Howard have endorsement deals with Adidas, and it has been reported that the company wouldn’t want its two most marketable NBA players in the same city.
“Everybody wants to be that guy to take the last shot,” Howard said. “Be that guy that everybody is leaning on for whatever reason, and I don’t think there’s any problem for wanting to be that guy.”
There isn’t anything stopping the Bulls from trading for Howard. But if he’s unwilling to sign a contract extension with the Bulls, his price tag would be too high. His contract expires after this season, and the Magic likely would want young players locked up long term and draft picks.
Possible suitors for Howard include the Lakers, Mavericks, Nets and Warriors. All but the Mavericks have young pieces that could be shipped to Orlando in a deal.
The Magic, which sits with the third-best record in the Eastern Conference, has said it might keep Howard for a title run.
Winning a championship, however unlikely for the Magic, might be the team’s only chance of keeping him in Orlando past this season.
“I want to win, and I want to put my team in the best position to win,” Howard said.
“I’ve given Orlando eight hard years. Everything I got I left on the floor, and they all understand that.”
Taking the floor every night has been difficult for the Magic with the backdrop of the Howard rumors.
“It’s very tough for our team, for myself, to just stay in that moment which is what we got to control on the court,” Howard said. “But while you’re on the court you hear everybody in the stands saying certain things, and then when things don’t go well, people start talking about it.”