orlando-magic
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Sunday , Jan , 29 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard: Magic lack heart and soul

“Looked like guys didn’t want to play,” he said. “I told them at halftime, if you don’t want to play, just stay in the lockerroom. It doesn’t make sense for a teams we should beat to just demolish us. “You bring everything down,” Howard said, referring to a player who isn’t playing with heart and soul.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: First he said he wouldn’t mind playing for the Boston Celtics. Then, after his Orlando Magic gave-up a 27 point lead and lost to those same Celtics, he questioned his teammates' heart.

Add it up, and this is a problem.

In case you’ve been living in a cave, Dwight Howard can opt-out of his contract at season’s end and ditch the Magic as an unrestricted free agent.

Currently the signs aren’t good that Howard inks another four or five year pact with the Magic. Face it: the signs were never good that he’d stay …

1) Howard wants to win, and the Magic have never found him a legit’ co-star. Instead, GM Otis Smith overpaid mediocre talent, killing the club’s cap space.

2) Howard wants to transition into the entertainment industry, and the small city of Orlando can’t compare to larger markets like New York and/or Los Angeles.

3) The grass is always greener on the other side, especially when the same old, same old (Orlando) isn’t working.

Bottom line: perhaps it's finally time the Magic trade Howard.

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Tuesday , Jan , 24 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire for Dwight Howard?

Any questions ya'll have about my report on D-Howard/Amar'e/Chandler...please listen in to the show NOW! I will NOT keep repeating myself.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s no surprise the Orlando Magic tested the trade waters with the New York Knicks, proposing a Dwight Howard for Tyson Chandler and Amar’e Stoudemire swap.

The Knicks, who believed they’d contend, have struggled early on. Superstars Carmelo Anthony and Stoudemire aren’t clicking. Coach Mike D’Antoni is on the hot seat. And the Madison Square Gardens masses are restless.

Translation: the Knicks are vulnerable, especially without a wise, veteran executive in the front office to preach patience and/or give D’Antoni a vote of confidence.

Would the Knicks be better with Howard instead of Chandler and Stoudemire?

Well, perhaps. Problem is, they’d still have Carmelo Anthony firing away from the outside and refusing to facilitate for teammates.

Until Anthony’s game becomes more balanced, it won’t matter who the Knicks have at center or power forward.

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Sunday , Jan , 22 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Orlando Magic daring Dwight Howard to leave?

Despite the daily chatter about Dwight Howard's trade demand, the Orlando Magic are seriously exploring the option now of calling his bluff, believing he can't walk away from the extra $28-$30 million in guaranteed money they can pay him — and no one else can — in his next contract.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: It’s quite the haircut.

The Orlando Magic are tired of the rumors Dwight Howard will bolt as a free agent in July, so they’re pointing out the obvious: leaving will cost him $30 million.

The Magic can offer $30 million more in an extension than Howard’s top three choices of the Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, and New Jersey/Brooklyn Nets.

Of course, money isn’t everything.

Howard may take a discounted salary with Dallas, L.A., and New Jersey -if he feels those squads improve his chances at a championship.

In L.A. and New Jersey/Brooklyn, he’d maximize sponsorships and transition into the entertainment industry, which would offset his ‘reduced’ salary.

The wildcard is Deron Williams, the soon-to-be free agent with the Nets. More and more, it appears Howard and Williams will follow other superstars' lead and partner-up.

But where?

Perhaps Howard takes less to stay with the Magic, but only if they sign Williams. This would finally give him an elite teammate to battle the rival Miami Heat.

And the rumors would have been for nothing.

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

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Saturday , Jan , 21 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard: Shaq should ‘get on with his life’

Magic center Dwight Howard, responding to Shaquille O’Neal saying that Andrew Bynum is the NBA’s best center, said after Friday’s shootaround that Shaq should ‘just sit down and get on with his life.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Will Dwight Howard ever learn?

For years, the Orlando Magic big man let Shaquille O’Neal have the upper hand by reacting publicly to his rhetoric, jabs, and insults.

(Remember, the ‘real superman’ controversy, which resulted in Howard acting like a rejected teenager?)

At the time, it was somewhat understandable. Howard was still young. O’Neal was still relevant. And Howard idolized O’Neal.

Today, it’s a different story. Howard is one of the game’s great players, while O’Neal is the newest broadcaster on TNT’s Emmy-winning panel.

Unfortunately, this is lost on Howard. He reacted instead of realizing O’Neal is using their old rivalry to gain publicity and profile for his new profession.

Once again, O’Neal has won. And Howard, it seems, will never learn.

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Wednesday , Jan , 18 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Dwight Howard to Clippers?

SheridanHoops.com learned exclusively Monday that Howard recently expanded his list of preferred future destinations, adding the Clippers to a list that already included the Nets, the Mavericks and the Lakers. “He’s been watching them a lot. He’s intrigued by the Clippers,” said the source, who is privy to the trade talks that have taken place between all of the aforementioned teams.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Times have changed.

It wasn't long ago the Los Angeles Clippers weren't in the running for anything except the first pick at the draft much less a superstar center like Dwight Howard.

After all, the Clippers were a laughingstock. Their owner wanted luxury tax rebate cheques, not wins. They drafted Benoit Benjamin, Danny Ferry, and Michael Olowakandi. Worst of all, they played in the shadow of the league's glamour team, the Los Angeles Lakers.

Sure, there were moments. A few years back, Sam Cassell and Elton Brand pushed the Phoenix Suns to seven games in the Western Conference Semi-finals.

The Clippers have mostly been a disaster.

Everything changed with Blake Griffin. 'Lob Angeles' is must-see television, and people listen when reports link Los Angeles' newest darling to Howard.

But it won't happen. The Magic will want Griffin in return for Howard. The 2011 Slam Dunk Champion is untouchable, as he's made the Clippers trendy, glamorous, and relevant.

Instead, the Magic may ask for newly acquired Chris Paul. Forget that the Clippers paid a pretty-penny for the point guard. And forget that both sides agreed to work together for two seasons.

Paul would likely refuse to sign a long-term extension with the Magic, and simply opt-out at season's end and become a free agent.

Sure, times have changed. The Clippers are a destination-team. Still, they lack the parts to trade for Howard and become his next destination.

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

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Sunday , Jan , 15 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Nets want OJ Mayo to appease Deron Williams?

The Grizzlies are again discussing whether to deal reserve guard O.J. Mayo. This time, Memphis has explored at least two trade scenarios with the New Jersey Nets over the past couple of weeks, according to two NBA sources.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: This is about appeasement.

The New Jersey Nets are trying to land OJ Mayo from the Memphis Grizzlies to keep franchise face Deron Williams happy.

After all, Williams can opt-out of his contract and leave the Nets and their soon to be built Brooklyn stadium as a free agent in July. Fortunately, club executives can spin a Mayo trade in many ways:

1) They can tell Williams they’ve been active, have upgraded his supporting cast, and are committed to winning now.

2) They can tell Williams they won’t qualify Mayo, and will use the available cap space to sign Dwight Howard -provided the Orlando Magic center opts-out this summer

3) They can tell Williams the Nets won’t wait for the summer for Howard, and that Mayo will be included in sign-and-trade offers for Superman.

There's one certainty: the Nets lose Williams if they do nothing. Expect a move -and soon.

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Friday , Jan , 13 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Report: Al Horford out 3-4 months?

The Hawks say Al Horford will miss 3-4 months with a torn pectoral muscle suffered during last night’s 96-84 loss at Indiana.. Horford is to get a second opinion on whether to proceed with the surgery. Under the most most optimistic time frame, Horford would return in mid-April. Atlanta’s final regular-season game is scheduled for April 26.

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Whatever slim shot the Atlanta Hawks had at acquiring Dwight Howard is likely gone.

After all, the Hawks were reportedly offering Al Horford and Joe Johnson to the Magic in exchange for Howard. Horford's injured pectoral muscle complicates things.

Of course, Howard, an Atlanta native, wouldn't sign an extension with the Hawks, as he prefers a bigger market to land lucrative sponsors and transition into the entertainment industry.

Think Los Angeles. Think New York. Maybe Dallas, if owner Mark Cuban works his magic. Not Atlanta, especially with Horford on the injured list for an extended period.

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Tuesday , Jan , 10 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard: I’ll be with Magic through All-Star break

He told Yahoo! Sports he thinks there’s a “100 percent” chance the Magic won’t trade him before the Feb. 26 All-Star Game at the team’s Amway Center. Team officials still hope to convince Howard to commit to staying with the franchise for the long term. “I don’t think they are going to do anything right now because we’re winning,” Howard said after a 104-97 victory over the Sacramento Kings improved the Magic’s record to 6-3. “Even if this is the last season, let’s go out hard, regardless.”

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HoopsVibe's Very Quick Call: Dwight Howard's status with the Orlando Magic seems to change daily.

Howard now thinks he'll stay with the Magic through the All-Star break, despite executive Otis Smith telling reporters that the star hasn't rescinded his trade demand.

So things are in flux.

Usually these types of distractions are a recipe for disaster, however, the Magic have opened the season at 6-3. The more they win, the longer Howard stays.

This isn't a long-term solution, as the giant can opt-out of his contract at year's end and become a free agent.

Howard only signs an extension with the Magic if Smith pulls off the impossible and acquires Deron Williams from the New Jersey Nets. 

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Sunday , Jan , 08 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Dwight Howard to stay in Orlando … with Deron Williams?

Local 6 Sports Director David Pingalore has learned that Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard may be rethinking his trade request. In December, Howard told the Magic he would want to be traded to either the New Jersey Nets, Dallas Mavericks or Los Angeles Lakers.Multiple NBA sources confirmed to Pingalore that Howard has been heavily recruiting New Jersey Nets point guard Deron Williams to play with him in Orlando. Pingalore has also learned the Magic are trying to trade for Williams. Pingalore's sources confirmed that Howard would rather stay in Orlando, and the sources said that it's an "80 percent" chance Howard stays.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Will he stay? Will he go?

The Dwight Howard merry-go-round has again taken another turn, as the All-Star post is reconsidering his trade request and may sign a long-term extension with the Orlando Magic.

Forget the rumors involving the Lakers and Andrew Bynum and/or Pau Gasol.

Forget the gossip about the soon-to-be Brooklyn Nets.

And forget the speculation about Howard’s rift with Magic executive Otis Smith.

In the end, it may not matter because the former Slam Dunk champion is seriously considering staying in Orlando.

There’s a catch: Howard wants Deron Williams to join him. The muscular table-setter is unhappy with the Nets and, like Howard, can become a free agent in July.

This is a surprise. Most of us knew Howard and Williams had interest in partnering up, however, we assumed it would happen in a major market like Brooklyn, not Orlando.

After all, Brooklyn would allow both superstars to maximize marketing and business opportunities in New York, while Orlando is a smaller city tucked away in Florida.

So, Howard’s future remains up in the air. And the debate over whether he stays or goes will continue for some time.

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

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Tuesday , Jan , 03 , 2012 Hoopsvibe

Video: Jason Richardson denied by the rim

HoopsVibe`s Very Quick Call: Wasn`t Jason Richardson a former Slam Dunk champion?

Well, you`d never know watching him get rejected by the rim in a game between the Orlando Magic and Toronto Raptors.

Click the video below, watch Richardson`s epic failure, and get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box.

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Thursday , Dec , 29 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Josh Smith and Joe Johnson for Dwight Howard?

Sources told ESPN.com that the aforementioned Hawks, meanwhile, engaged Orlando in trade talks for Howard earlier this month with an offer believed to be headlined by $124 million guard Joe Johnson and swingman Josh Smith. You have to figure that the Magic, though, would insist on Al Horford if such discussions ever got serious.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Rebuilding isn’t an option for the Orlando Magic, so they’re reluctant to trade franchise face Dwight Howard for prospects, draft picks, and expiring contracts.

The powers that be in Orlando want established professionals -like, say, Joe Johnson and Josh Smith of the Atlanta Hawks.

This is interesting, as both are big-ticket pieces, especially Johnson who is due to earn $107 million over the next five years. Smith is due $25.5 million through 2013.

Here’s the question: is Johnson and Smith superior to the Lakers reported offer of Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol?

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

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Thursday , Dec , 29 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Deron Williams wants ‘top-tier’ guys (Dwight Howard) to stay with Nets?

“We need some more pieces,” he said. “There’s no secret about that. There’s not many starters on our team right now. We have a lot of great role players, a lot of guys who know their job, but in this league you need some top-tier guys so you can get the job done.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Deron Williams has leverage over the New Jersey Nets and isn’t afraid to use it.

Williams, a top point guard who can opt-out of his contract this summer and become an unrestricted free agent, will only re-sign with the Nets if they supply him with 'top-tier guys'.

Translation: he wants Dwight Howard, the NBA’s best center.

(Howard is in a similar predicament with the Orlando Magic. He too can opt-out of his contract this summer and walk on the Magic as an unrestricted free agent. And he also wants a superstar teammate.)

Howard reportedly has interest in joining a Williams led Nets squad, especially since they’re leaving the marshy swamps of Jersey for the borough of Brooklyn.

Howard, a magnanimous personality, loves the lights, stars, and marketing opportunities available in The Big Apple.

So, on paper, it all works. Williams is simply providing the Nets will a little urgency to make it happen.

He might as well. After all, he has leverage.

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

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Tuesday , Dec , 20 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Andrei Kirilenko returns to ‘Motherland’ Nets?

Source confirms that Andrei Kirilenko is on his way to leave CSKA Moscow and join New Jersey Nets where he will sign a multi-year deal.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: He’s back from the motherland. And will play for the NBA's version of the motherland.

Word is the New Jersey Nets, who are owned by Russia’s richest man and presidential candidate Mikhail Prokhorov, have signed Andrei Kirilenko, Russia’s best basketball player, to a multi-year contract.

This is hardly a surprise. During the lockout, Kirilenko played for CSKA Moscow, a Russian club side owned by (surprise, surprise) Prokhorov.

Here’s the question: how much?

As in how much cap space did the Nets use. Remember, the soon-to-be Brooklyn franchise must save cap space to trade for Orlando Magic post Dwight Howard, which may also mean taking the remaining years of Hedo Turkoglu’s toxic pact.

So today the Nets are better after signing Kirilenko. However, it’s the next move everyone is watching.

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

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Sunday , Dec , 18 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard on Orlando: ‘I love this city’

During the player introductions Saturday, Howard received a standing ovation. He said that moment was special for him.

“It was emotional,” he said. “It was great to see their reaction. And like I’ve told you guys from day one, I love this city. … When I came here, everybody called our team the Orlando Tragic. I wanted to change it. Nobody says tragic anymore.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Perhaps there is hope.

Perhaps the fan support will influence Dwight Howard to rescind his trade demand, avoid opting-out of his contract next July, and sign a long-term extension with the Orlando Magic.

Such a scenario is unlikely.

Howard wants a larger market, superstar teammates, and a chance at winning a championship each year.

This means he must take flight for one of the NBA’s major markets. Think Los Angeles, but only if the Lakers give up Andrew Bynum, the golden boy in the organization. Think New Jersey, but only if the Nets re-sign point guard Deron Williams. Think Dallas, but only if the Mavericks can clear the necessary cap space.

Yesterday was positive. So there is hope for Orlando fans. Just not much of it.

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Wednesday , Dec , 14 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Lakers again chasing Chris Paul?

The Lakers are making another run at Chris Paul, who remains in limbo as the NBA league office has taken over negotiations on behalf of the Hornets.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Pau Gasol, it’s not over.

For months the Spanish post has been plagued by rumors that the Los Angeles Lakers were looking to trade him.

He had been linked to Kevin Love in Minnesota, Dwight Howard in Orlando, and twice nearly found a home in Houston as part of a three-team blockbuster for Chris Paul of New Orleans.

Of course, Commissioner Stern and the NBA, who own the Hornets, nixed both previous offers from the Lakers, citing the ever-mysterious ‘basketball reasons’.

Now the Lakers are apparently taking a third run at Paul, and Gasol is again the centerpiece of the purple-and-gold’s offer.

So the rumors will continue. And Gasol could still end up out of town.
 
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Monday , Dec , 12 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Magic will make Howard wait for trade?

When Dwight Howard asked to be traded, the Magic informed him that the team will not let his request dictate their timetable for a decision.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Dwight Howard will have to wait for his ticket out of Orlando.

Magic executives reportedly told their franchise-face, who formally asked for a trade, that they won't rush to satisfy his request for a change of scenery.

There are two sides to this approach. On the one hand, the Magic's future is at stake, so they must take their time and get what they can from potential suitors.

On the other hand, waiting means dealing with with 24/7 internet rumors and constant questioning from media. Such distractions could railroad their season.

There’s both good and bad to making Howard wait for what seems inevitable.

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Sunday , Dec , 11 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Dwight Howard has asked Magic for trade

Magic GM Otis Smith told the media on Saturday that Dwight Howard has asked to be traded on two separate occasions this week.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: A trade is coming. And sooner rather than later, too.

Reports are surfacing that Dwight Howard twice formally asked the Orlando Magic for a trade this past week.

Now the Magic can talk all they like about re-upping with their franchise face and All-Star post, however, Howard has decided he wants out.

There’s still a remote chance Howard inks a long-term extension to stay, but the Magic would have to put together a strong, strong season.

And a winning season would be difficult - if not impossible - with Howard’s pending free agency hanging over the club like an ominous rain cloud.

Day-in, day-out the media would hound Howard, club officials, and teammates with pestering questions.

It would be wiser to give Howard the trade he seems to so desperately want.

--Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
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Saturday , Dec , 10 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Orlando let Dwight Howard talk to three teams?

The marriage between the Orlando Magic and Dwight Howard, for all intents and purposes, is now basically over. Just a matter of where the big man ends up. Reports SI: “Dwight Howard’s agent, Dan Fegan, tells SI that the Magic gave Howard permission to have contact with several teams to explore his options. Fegan says report that Dwight could have been traded today was ‘inaccurate.’ Fegan says the Orlando gave Howard permission to talk to three teams. New Jersey was one of them.”

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: This is the latest evidence that Dwight Howard is done with the Orlando Magic.

After all, the Magic 'reportedly' allowed Howard, their franchise face and perennial All-Star, to talk to three teams about a trade and extension.

Remember, Howard can and will opt-out of the final year of his contract next summer, meaning he can leave the Magic as a free agent.

And he won’t sign an extension with the Magic, so the club is letting Howard explore his options to help facilitate a trade.  

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Monday , Dec , 05 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Report: Suns to buyout Carter?

The Phoenix Suns will move forward without Vince Carter on their roster. Carter’s full $18 million salary for this season would have been guaranteed if not released within 72 hours of the official start of free agency.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: In Toronto, he was touted as the face of the NBA. In New Jersey, he was a perennial All-Star. In Orlando, he was tabbed as the final piece of the puzzle.

Oh how the mighty have fallen.

Sometime over the next few days, the Phoenix Suns are expected to exercise the opt-out clause on the final year of Vince Carter’s contract.

The club would rather pay the $4 million buyout and have Carter walk then fork out $18 million for the 2012 season.

Carter will become a free agent. And there will be interest in his services, however, he’ll be lucky to get the Mid Level Exception.

After all, Carter’s days as a high flyer are over. Too often, he avoids contact and settles for perimeter fade-aways and off balance jump shots.

The next few days provide Carter a final shot at salvaging something from a mostly disappointing career.

--Got thoughts? Well, get at HoopsVibe News in the comment box below.
 
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Saturday , Dec , 03 , 2011 Hoopsvibe

Rumor: Bynum ‘indifferent’ about possible Howard deal?

The source classified Bynum as “indifferent” to all the trade talk and willing to play wherever. This is the third time he’s been rumored to be the centerpiece of a package for an All-Star, previously being involved in discussions for Kevin Garnett and Jason Kidd.

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HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: Andrew Bynum has been through this before.

Remember the Los Angeles Lakers nearly dealt a teenage Bynum to the New Jersey Nets for Jason Kidd. The speculation was ramped, with Laker great Kobe Bryant commenting on the trade rumors in a bizarre cell-phone video.

There had also been chatter of Bynum being dangled as bait for Kevin Garnett when The Big Ticket was looking to escape the Minnesota Timberwolves.

So it’s no surprise that Bynum isn’t bothered by the chatter of being sent to the Orlando Magic in exchange for All-Star Dwight Howard.

In Orlando, he’d be the undisputed first option. There’d be no more playing in the shadow of Kobe Bryant.

However, there’s a strong chance the Lakers keep Bynum. He was, after all, the choice of Jim Buss, the new lead executive of the purple-and-gold and, most importantly, the owner’s son.

The younger Buss uses Bynum’s success to justify his position in the front office. Don’t think this doesn’t matter in the political world of the purple-and-gold.

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