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Wednesday , Mar , 14 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Bulls want Pau Gasol?

The Chicago Bulls are exploring avenues to acquire Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol before Thursday's trade deadline, according to sources close to the situation.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Years ago, the Los Angeles Lakers acquired Pau Gasol from the Memphis Grizzlies and then went on to win consecutive championships.

Perhaps the Spanish post will be the missing piece for the impressive Chicago Bulls. The Bulls reportedly want the skilled Gasol to complement 2011 MVP Derrick Rose.

And they’d be willing to sacrifice Carlos Boozer to get the perennial All-Star. But what’s in this trade for the Lakers?

Well, the Lakers aren’t interested in a straight Gasol for Boozer swap, so the Bulls are calling the league trying to find a third team to involve.

Of course, the clock is ticking. Thursday at noon eastern is the trade deadline.

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Sunday , Mar , 11 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Thunder won’t trade Harden and Ibaka for Howard?

Oklahoma City is not in the Dwight Howard sweepstakes. Not giving up Harden/Ibaka. Not happening.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Why break up a good thing?

The Oklahoma City Thunder were wise to kybosh the Orlando Magic’s offer of Dwight Howard for James Harden and Serge Ibaka.

After all, Harden and Ibaka are key components of a young Thunder squad that currently has the NBA`s best record and seem poised for greatness.

There’s no point in breaking up their core for the temperamental Howard, who has little interest in re-signing with small market Oklahoma City.

Howard wants a major market to maximize marketing opportunities. Like Los Angeles. Like New York. Maybe Dallas -if he can partner with Deron Williams.

Oklahoma City, even though their building an incredible legacy, isn’t right for Howard.

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Saturday , Mar , 10 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Rockets and Lakers still talking Gasol trade?

Lakers front office telling people that "nothing is happening" with Pau Gasol, league sources say. For now, anyway.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: The Los Angeles Lakers want great, not good.

So it doesn’t matter that Pau Gasol was an integral part of the purple-and-gold winning two championships. To stay great, the Lakers must make changes -and that likely means parting with Gasol.

In the last year, the Spaniard has been linked to the Minnesota Timberwolves, included in Dwight Howard trade talk, and nearly sent to the Houston Rockets as part of the nixed Chris Paul deal.

Bottom line: Lakers’ management are willing to sacrifice their All-Star so they can rebuild for another championship on the fly.

Fair enough. What if the Lakers can’t trade Gasol for a superstar before the deadline?

Then Kobe and company will have the unenviable task of pushing for a championship with a disgruntled second star.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

 

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Monday , Mar , 05 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Kobe Bryant: Wade and LeBron aren’t worthy rivals

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant has always been lauded for his self-motivation and drive to be the best. It's a good thing he has that internal ambition, because according to Bryant, he's gone through his 16-year career without a true rival on the exterior to push him to succeed. "I didn't have one," Bryant said after scoring 38 points in the Lakers' 115-107 win over the Sacramento Kings on Friday.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Gee, Kobe Bryant, tell us how you feel?

Bryant has every right to say he measures himself against Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan, and not LeBron James and Dwyane Wade.

Bryant, like Jordan and Johnson, won many championships, while James and Wade combined have one championship.

And Bryant played seven seasons in the NBA before James and Wade were drafted as part of the highly touted 2003 class.

This wasn’t about hoisting the Larry O’Brien championship trophy, though. This was about an edge -as Bryant’s Lakers faced James and Wade’s Heat in a much-hyped nationally televised game.

Fans were especially curious to see how Bryant would respond to Wade’s hard foul during the 2012 All-Star game in Orlando.

Bryant, in typical Black Mamba fashion, took no offense to the foul, which broke his nose and gave him a concussion. He simply proved his point by leading the Lakers to a 93-83 win over the Heat.

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Sunday , Mar , 04 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Chris Kaman on Potential Trades: ‘I don’t care’

With the NBA trade deadline looming in 11 days, the Hornets remain open to trading veteran center Chris Kaman, according to league sources. But Kaman said he doesn’t care what the Hornets may decide to do before the trade deadline.“I dont care what they do,’’ Kaman said. “So if they want to trade me, trade me. If they want to keep me, keep me. I don’t care, but not in a disrespectful way. I just know I can’t control that part of it, so it something I don’t care about.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Chris Kaman isn’t at fault for this. Commissioner David Stern and the 30 owners he represents are.

Remember, Kaman came to the Hornets from the Clippers in the Chris Paul trade. The Hornets, who are owned by the NBA, had to accept an inferior package from the Clippers after Stern vetoed a blockbuster swap involving the Lakers and Rockets.

Stern nixed Paul joining the Lakers because he was concerned about the optics of a glamour team getting a superstar days after ushering in a supposedly more equitable Collective Bargaining Agreement.

Instead of getting a package of Luis Scola, Kevin Martin, Lamar Odom, Goran Dragic, and a first round draft pick, the Hornets accepted Kaman, Eric Gordon, and other pieces.

All for optics.

Gordon has been injured. And Kaman, who struggled behind Emeka Okafor, was told earlier in the year by management to go home and wait for a trade. He recently returned when a trade couldn’t be found.

The bright side to this saga: Kaman’s $14 million per year contract expires at the end of the regular season.

So, the Hornets will get cap space if a deal can’t be found.

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Saturday , Mar , 03 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Will Lamar Odom or Mr. Khloe Kardashian return to Mavs?

Mavs decide they need Lamar Odom ASAP for tonight's game against Utah. D-League stint canceled. Story w/Jeff Caplan going up now.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Mr. Khloe Kardashian will not have to 'lower' himself by reporting to the D-League, after all.

The Dallas Mavericks did send Lamar Odom to their minor league affiliate, the Texas Legends, for a conditioning stint after his return from personal leave.

The Mavericks, it turns out, need Odom for tonight's match against the Utah Jazz, so he's been recalled.

Here’s the question: is Odom ready to contribute?

He has spent months whining like a reality TV diva about his beloved Lakers including him in the nixed Chris Paul trade. Odom could have stayed with the purple-and-gold but forced a move to Team Cuban.

The versatile swing has had a reduced role in Rick Carlisle’s rotation. All his numbers are down.

Odom must improve to earn decent money next summer when the Mavericks buy out his contract to chase chase free agents Dwight Howard and/or Deron Williams.

--Got thoughts? Well get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.  

 

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Tuesday , Feb , 28 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Kings and city of Sacramento agree on arena deal

The city of Sacramento and the Kings announced a tentative deal today to build a new arena in the downtown railyard. More than half the money would come from leasing the city's parking to a private operator, but the team's owners say they've also agreed to pay $75 million upfront.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Good for Sacramento fans.

Today, the city of Sacramento and the Kings announced they had reached a deal on financing a new arena, ending any chance the team would move to Anaheim or Seattle.

Good for Kings-nation. A decade ago, Sacramento was a basketball-mad market, with a highly competitive team and intense fans.

In fact, other teams, specifically Phil Jackson and the Lakers, mocked the Kings for the cowbells and hooky building.

Bottom line: the Kings are staying. They can plan for the future, focus on winning, and get back to being a great franchise.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
 

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Sunday , Feb , 26 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Magic turned down Andrew Bynum for Dwight Howard?

“I can tell you for a fact the Lakers offered Andrew Bynum and the Magic do not want him,” said a Western Conference executive.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Thanks but no thanks.

Reports indicate the Orlando Magic turned down the Los Angeles Lakers’ offer of emerging All-Star Andrew Bynum for established franchise-face Dwight Howard.

Perhaps the Magic were fearful of Bynum’s health. Perhaps the Magic were holding out for more. Or perhaps, the Magic were hoping Howard would sign an extension.

Bottom line: Magic executive Otis Smith screwed up.

Smith must cut his losses and trade Howard for the best possible offer. And Bynum, a terrific young five, is the best the Magic can get.

The alternative is to wait until summer when Howard opts-out of his contract and likely leaves Orlando as an unrestricted free agent.

Howard prefers Dallas, L.A., and New Jersey/Brooklyn to Orlando, and he has twice asked Smith for a trade.

The Magic braintrust must face reality and accept that Howard is gone. Then they should call the Lakers back and ask if Bynum is still available.

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Saturday , Feb , 25 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Wallace in, Gasol (perhaps) out for Lakers?

CSNNE.com has learned that the former Boston Celtic forward plans to sign with the Los Angeles Lakers. Wallace hasn't played in an NBA game since Game 7 of the 2010 NBA Finals, alerting the C's shortly before the game that he planned to retire. Although he had two years remaining on his contract, Wallace and the Celtics came to terms on a buy-out of the remaining years believed to be worth about $1 million.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Signing Rasheed Wallace works on many levels for the Los Angeles Lakers.

First, if in shape, the former All-Star provides depth down-low, giving the purple-and-gold three massive posts in Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol, and Wallace.

Second, coach Mike Brown will love Wallace’s defense, specifically his ability to help and communicate with teammates.

Third, Wallace, most importantly,  can serve as a short-term stop-gap if the Lakers trade Gasol before the trade deadline.

Make no mistake about it, the Lakers will move the Spanish four if they can land a point guard to run Brown’s offensive sets. The club isn’t getting enough from the inconsistent Steve Blake and aging Derek Fisher.

So Wallace is, reportedly, the Lakers` latest move. He won’t be the last -as they attempt to rebuild on the fly.

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Friday , Feb , 24 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Derrick Rose: I never told Bulls to acquire Pau Gasol

He also dismissed the circulated rumors of him privately urging management to pursue trading Carlos Boozer for Los Angeles Lakers power forward Pau Gasol. “I heard it after the game [on Monday] and that’s something that I wouldn’t say to anyone,” said Rose. “It was all false and that’s something I’ll never do. I’m good with the teammates that I have. I’ve always been saying that. We’ve been winning games and we’re not in the position to look to trade anyone right now. “I talked to [Boozer] a little bit, but I think he already knew that [the rumor] was false,” continued Rose. “It’s something that I wouldn’t do to anyone. It was all false.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Perception is reality.

And the perception outside the Chicago Bulls’ locker room is that 2011 MVP and franchise face Derrick Rose quietly, or not so quietly, asked management to acquire Los Angeles Lakers power forward Pau Gasol.

Gasol, if acquired, would help. He’d provide scoring and passing down-low -something Carlos Boozer has failed to do since signing with the Bulls.

Here’s the problem: the Bulls would have to give-up Boozer to get Gasol.

Rose and Boozer know this. And these two know they must work together.

So, Rose has to cover himself by publicly denying the rumour to reporters and saying he’s good with his current teammates like Boozer.

Privately, something different could have been said between Rose and Bulls management.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Wednesday , Feb , 22 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Lakers want Mike Beasley?

The Lakers' front office knows Kobe Bryant is looking for it to improve the roster, and GM Mitch Kupchak has been working the phones. He's spoken to Minnesota about Michael Beasley, and sources say the Lakers are intrigued by the Timberwolves' small forward. The Lakers were actually in discussions with Minnesota about a potential trade for Beasley before the season started. If they would have been able to pull off the deal for Chris Paul, there is a good chance that a trade for Beasley would have followed.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It makes sense.

Acquiring Michael Beasley would be wise for the Los Angeles Lakers because the NBA’s glamour team is old and stale.

With Shannon Brown in Phoenix and Lamar Odom doing the reality television thing in Dallas, the purple-and-gold struggle to get easy hoops in the open court.

Beasley, despite having off-court issues, can flat-out score. He can hit the three, get to the hoop, and post up opposing forwards on the block.

Moreover, superstar Kobe Bryant could mentor Beasley and steer him away from off-court temptations in Los Angeles and the trappings of Hollywood.

Most importantly, the Lakers need a jolt if they’re to rebuild on the fly, contend in the Western Conference, and capitalize on the final years of Bryant’s career.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Friday , Feb , 17 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Lakers trading Gasol?

"There's talks and rumors every day. Today I was reading it was Minnesota is really interested in trying to put a good package together," he said. "[Other teams are] calling, and it seems like things are just waiting for the right offer to come along, for [the Lakers] to pull the trigger."

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Pau Gasol should feel uncertain about his future.

Two months, the Los Angeles Lakers nearly included him in a three team trade for New Orleans Hornets point guard Chris Paul.

During the lockout, reports surfaced that the Lakers had offered Gasol to the Minnesota Timberwolves for franchise face Kevin Love.

Recently, rumors have swirled linking Gasol to the Orlando Magic for Dwight Howard, and the Lakers are still apparently talking to the Wolves.

So, why the trade chatter?

Well, the Lakers are expected to win a championship every year. Hoisting the Larry O’Brien trophy is the only way to satisfy the ‘celebs’ at Staples Center and Kobe Bryant, their franchise player and the NBA’s Alpha Male.

Right now, the Lakers stand little chance of meeting such expectations. And Gasol can still fetch a pretty-penny on the trade market, which would help the Lakers rebuild on the fly. 

--Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Tuesday , Feb , 14 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Video: Kobe Bryant still has ice in veins with winning shot vs. Raptors

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s still has ice in his veins. Always has, in fact.

This weekend Los Angeles Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant showed he still has ice in his veins by nailing a game-winning jumper against the struggling Toronto Raptors.

Click the video and see what we’re talking about.

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Sunday , Feb , 12 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Allen Iverson ‘The Answer’ for Lakers?

Allen Iverson, who sources indicated the Lakers had some interest in as long as he was willing to go to the NBA Developmental League for a few weeks first, is not the answer. He's simply not a point guard. The Lakers are also said to be interested in former Toronto Raptors point guard Rafer Alsotn, who helped the Orlando Magic reach the NBA Finals in 2009. But who knows if that will materialize into anything?

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: According to the rumor mill, Gilbert Arenas is no longer ‘The Answer’ to the Los Angeles Lakers’ point guard woes.

Reports indicate the purple-and-gold may think Allen Iverson is ‘The Answer’ -if he`ll report to their D-League affiliate for a conditioning stint.

A few things worth noting:

First, Iverson to the Lakers was first reported by ESPN scribe Stephen A. Smith, who has a personal and professional relationship with the former MVP from their time in Philadelphia.

So consider the source, and ask if Stephen A. is tossing Iverson a solid and keeping him relevant by even suggesting the Lakers had interest?

Second, Iverson always refused a bench role. He wouldn’t do it for Detroit. And he wouldn’t do it for Memphis. Worst of all, he wouldn’t do it for a contender.

It’s hard to believe he’d report to the D-League under any circumstances -even if there was the chance of joining the Lakers.

Third, Smith is right. Kobe and company need a pass-first point guard, not a shooting guard in a point guard’s body and big personality like Iverson.

The Answer’ isn’t the answer for the Lakers’ woes.   

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Sunday , Feb , 12 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Kobe Bryant supports Lakers signing Gilbert Arenas?

Kobe Bryant would give his approval for the signing of Gilbert Arenas, according to two people familiar with the situation. Bryant reportedly reached out to Arenas recently to let him know he’s on board with Arenas joining the Lakers.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: 'The Man' has given his approval.

Word is Kobe Bryant will support the Los Angeles Lakers if they sign Gilbert Arenas, the controversial shooting guard who was recently released via the amnesty clause by the Orlando Magic.

On the surface, this doesn’t look like a big deal. Arenas is a free agent. The Lakers are struggling. Seems a match, right?

Well, consider the context. Bryant, despite his recent denials, met Dwight Howard this summer to tell the All-Star post he’d be the third option if he joined the Lakers.

Translation: the purple and gold are Bryant’s team until he retires. There will be no passing of the baton under the Black Mamba's watch.

So Bryant likely relayed a similar message to Arenas and his people when he reached out to the former Washington Wizard.

After all, Arenas will see whatever team he signs with as an opportunity to salvage his career and reputation. And such an approach won’t help the Lakers climb the Western Conference standings.

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Sunday , Feb , 12 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Video: Legend of Jeremy Lin grows against Kobe’s Lakers

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Is Linsanity bigger than Tebow time?

Well, the Jeremy Lin story went up another notch with the Harvard grad dropping 38 points and 7 assists in the New York Knicks win over Kobe Bryant's Los Angeles Lakers last night.

Watch the video and tell us what Lin will do against Ricky Rubio and Minnesota Timberwolves?

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Thursday , Feb , 09 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Rondo for Gasol?

“Well, if there were a way for us to get a 25-year-old, All-Star, ball-handling guard we’d love to do it," said Kupchak to Mike Trudell of Lakers.com. "But that’s not likely in February. So you look at other alternatives, and see if it’s better than what you have. That’s all.” Rajon Rondo is the player that fits that description, possibly the only one in the NBA.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: The NBA's two glamour franchises, the Boston Celtics and Los Angeles Lakers, are open for business

The Celtics are looking at trades that can give their 'Big Three' a boost, and also help their rebuilding program when Ray Allen, Kevin Garnett, and Paul Pierce finally retire.

The Lakers are 14-11, which doesn't cut it with Kobe Bryant and the celebs' at Staples Center expecting a championship every year.

But Rajon Rondo for Pau Gasol seems unlikely.

Adding Rondo helps the Lakers, but there's no reason the Celtics would swap him for the older Gasol. Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak would have to sweeten the pot because a straight Rondo for Gasol deal isn't happening.

Here's what's interesting about this scenario: Rondo's name is again in the rumor mill.

Two months ago, Rondo was supposedly heading south to the New Orleans Hornets for point guard Chris Paul. That rumor upset Rondo, which forced the Celtics into denial mode.

Now Rondo may head west to the purple-and-gold. And he'll be upset with the latest reports.

So, will the Celtics deny, deny, deny or admit to taking offers for their lightning quick guard?

Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.

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Wednesday , Feb , 08 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Kobe on supposed rift with Dwight Howard: ‘It’s not true’

“omg! I’m not getting mixed up in this kiddy drama spit, bro. too old for that spit,” Bryant responded via email. "How do you think I feel at my age having to chase down this stuff,” I answered. “I understand your position. But if it’s untrue, any of it, and allowed to circulate throughout the league, which already is happening, I would think you’d want to say it’s not.” “It’s not true,” Kobe responded.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It was a no-win situation for Kobe Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers’ talented and polarizing shooting guard.

Bryant would only feed the rumor by addressing allegations he told Dwight Howard he’d be the third wheel on the Lakers. So Bryant stayed silent, which, of course, fed the rumor.

Damned if you do. Damned if you don’t.

After much prodding, Bryant finally denied telling Howard he’d have to be the ‘Tyson Chandler of the Lakers’. In fact, the All-Star went all Danny Glover in the Lethal Weapon movies, claiming to be ‘too old’ for this stuff.

Hopefully, no serious damage was done, and the Lakers still have a chance at Howard.

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Tuesday , Feb , 07 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Video: Kobe Passes Shaq for Fifth All Time in Scoring

HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Kobe Bryant notched 28 points to pass former teammate turned rival Shaquille O’Neal for fifth on the NBA’s All-Time scoring list.

Of course, Bryant won’t be happy with the personal accomplishment, as the Philadelphia 76ers beat his Los Angeles Lakers 95-90.

Watch the video, and get at HoopsVibe News with thoughts in the comment box below.

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Sunday , Feb , 05 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Did Kobe’s ego hurt the Lakers’ chances of getting Dwight Howard?

Howard stated that there was "no way" he would give up everything he has in Orlando to go to the Lakers and be the third option, a source close to the situation said. Howard certainly wouldn’t mind being a third piece on a star-studded team, similar to the situations in Miami and Boston. However, he was turned off by Bryant's presentation as it suggested something totally different.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Dwight Howard isn’t interested in being the Third Wheel for the Los Angeles Lakers behind Kobe Bryant and Pau Gasol.

After all, Howard is the current franchise face and superstar for the Orlando Magic. Being the third amigo, the ‘Tyson Chandler’ of the purple-and-gold, wasn’t a selling point for the NBA‘s best center.

Howard was expecting co-star status when meeting Bryant this summer to discuss joining the Lakers. Instead Bryant told Howard he’d have to wait until he retired, which wasn’t especially appealing.

So Howard has turned his attention elsewhere. His initial wish list -which started with the Nets, Mavericks as well as the Lakers - has expanded to include the Bulls and Celtics.

And if Howard ends up elsewhere, Laker-nation may blame Bryant.

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