Rule change means Dwight Howard will wait for free agency.
HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Dwight Howard wouldn't think of signing a contract extension to help complete a trade.
Howard is under contract through the 2012-2012 season. If he is traded and signs an extension now, the maximum number of years that contract can be is for three years.
Howard's agent recently explained why the new change in the labor agreement directly impacts Howard's decision. The new rule change affects players signing extensions before free agency and in Howard's case it makes no sense to sign an extension to help a trade. The new rule made it better for players to hit free agency, instead of extensions. This allows them to get more lucrative long-term deals. Signing now would likely cost Howard about $40 million.
Andrew Bynum is expected to follow the same painful path as Howard. Bynum could sign a three-year deal for $60 million or wait a year and sign a deal worth $100 million. Easy to see why under the new rules it's enticing to wait that extra year, hit free agency, and cash in.
It looks more and more like Dwight Howard will refuse to sign an extension to facilitate a trade. Orlando can't be blamed for wanting to get the best deal they can for Howard and Howard can't be blamed for wanting to cash in next year for $100 million. The problem is these two understandable issue make a Howard trade extremely difficult.
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