NBA Hall of Famer, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, directly questioned Dwight Howard’s basketball IQ on ESPN.
HoopsVibe’s Very Quick Call: First Take provided the perfect forum for Kareem to voice his opinion.
There has already been some tension between Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Dwight Howard dating back to the departure of Howard from the Lakers. Remember this?
Howard is an example of the fact that potential-has-a-shelf-life. Laker fans, be patient, allow Mitch & Co. to work the free agent market.
— Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (@kaj33) July 9, 2013
Kareem added even more fuel to that fire when he said on First Take that the former Lakers center’s “basketball IQ is not up to speed for him to be a dominant player,” which directly questioned the intelligence of Howard.
Dwight responded on Friday when he told the Houston Chronicle that “[Kareem Abdul-Jabbar] is old enough to where whatever I do shouldn’t even matter…If I’m Kareem, I’m like why?” Howard went on to say “you can’t win three Defensive Player of the Year trophies and be stupid. That can’t be done. And I don’t think any coach that has ever coached me has said I have a low IQ for basketball.”
I think that Howard responded as classy as possible, considering Kareem clearly still has some anger to vent on Howard after leaving Los Angeles. For all of the heat that Howard takes for his limited offensive ability and horrific free-throw shooting, those three DPOY awards stand out as proof that this man can change the game on the defensive end like nobody else. Only Dikembe Mutombo and Ben Wallace (four each) have more than Howard.
What differentiates Howard from Dikembe and Ben Wallace is the fact that both of those players averaged under 10 points per game for their career. Howard averages over 18 points per game. So despite the fact that his post-game isn’t as polished as his new head coach’s was back in the day (Kevin McHale) or his new mentor (Hakeem Olajuwon), the truth is that he can still contribute on both ends of the floor.
And with this added fuel, Dwight Howard just might show the NBA a whole new level of Superman in 2014.
Photo credit: @DwightHoward official Twitter page