My 2 Cent Tuesday sports blog zeroes in on the NBA trade deadline’s most enticing and equally exasperating player, Dwight Howard.
In addition to the chatter surrounding Cleveland Cavaliers’ Kevin Love, New York Knicks’ Carmelo Anthony and Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin, the Houston Rockets’ mercurial talent has received his share of deal making speculation involving high profile NBA players changing uniforms before the February 18 cutoff.
However, tempted teams need to take heed.
The ridiculously athletic Howard has proven once again this season that his immense physical skills pale in comparison to the baggage he tags along with him. Chronic injuries and a lack of development as a player and a leader stand out as clearly today as they did previously while a member of the Los Angeles Lakers and Orlando Magic.
Howard’s all around game has appeared to peak. Limited passing ability out of the post, anemic free shooting and average offensive skills in the post have shown little improvement.
However, his questionable drive and sulking reputation have seemed as if they’ve hit career highs.
Just observing Howard’s passive demeanor and, at times, pouting facial expressions during timeouts or stops in play – when he’s been healthy enough to play – should send out glaring caution signs to interested suitors.
Dwight Howard: An Intoxicating Elixir
NBA squads must beware that the intoxicating elixir that D12 evokes could be the chemistry killer that no one needs during a playoff run.
Shot blocking ability, ferocious rebounding and thunderous dunking may look good on ESPN Sports Center highlights, but grit, smarts, tenacity, an indomitable spirit and yes, competent free shooting ability, win championships.
Howard’s showmanship in Tinsel Town and the Magic Kingdom prove that he’s a bona fide entertainer. But, his lack of rings and checkered resumes in each city revealed immaturity and a lack of leadership
Booed by his own fans during his stint with the Lakers and maligned on numerous occasions by the NBA Twitter-verse, Howard deserved the criticism he brought upon himself.
Howard’s Change in Geography to Houston Didn’t Help
And, it didn’t change when he changed geography to Houston.
Sure, basketball junkies might be able to live with D12’s woeful free throw shooting and limited offensive game. However, none want this former all-star, sometimes head-case, to disrupt their team’s current playoff push.
I would like to see the long and “whining” road that Dwight Howard embarked upon in Orlando, that ended badly in Los Angeles and that has continued in Houston, eventually strengthen him and cause him to grow up.
May Dwight Howard silence the scoffers and experience re-birth on a new team that may gamble and seek to trade for him before the 18th.
Most importantly, may D12 eventually mature into the player and man that NBA fans can admire both on and off the court.
And, that’s my 2 cents.
MIKE on sports!