A four-team trade that would send Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers is complete, multiple sources told ESPN on Thursday night.
Dwight Howard, Kobe Bryant
A source with direct knowledge of the talks told ESPN.com’s Marc Stein the Lakers will receive Howard, the Denver Nuggets will acquire Andre Iguodala, the 76ers will receive Andrew Bynum and Jason Richardson, and the Magic will get Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic and one protected future first-round pick from each of the other three teams.
In addition, the Magic will be getting other pieces, including 76ers No. 1 draft pick Moe Harkless, a source told Stein.
While the Los Angeles Lakers continued to engage the Orlando Magic in discussions to acquire All-Star center Dwight Howard, there was no face-to-face meeting between Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak and Orlando general manager Rob Hennigan on Tuesday, a league source told ESPNLosAngeles.com.
The Lakers remain committed to pursuing Howard even without assurances he would sign a long-term extension with the club. What is unclear to both sides is whether Orlando would accept Andrew Bynum without assurances he would sign a long-term extension.
If a Howard trade is not feasible, the Lakers would quickly turn their attention to resuming extension talks with Bynum and re-signing forward Jordan Hill. If Bynum agrees to an extension, it would start the clock on a deal for Howard in much the same way Brooklyn’s extension with Brook Lopez did.
The Nets have offered Brook Lopez a fully guaranteed maximum deal of $58 million.
Brooklyn and Lopez are discussing the fifth years.
The Nets have made this offer to prevent Lopez from seeking an offer sheet with a rival team as they are keeping hope of trading for Dwight Howard.
Marc Stein reports that both the Blazers and Bobcats are prepared to sign Lopez to a four-year maximum offer sheet.
The Brooklyn Nets’ persistent efforts to land Magic center Dwight Howard are getting close to paying off, according to sources.
Sources told ESPN.com that the Nets and Magic are cautiously optimistic that the Cavaliers and Clippers will help them facilitate a four-way trade that lands Howard in Brooklyn.
- The Nets would receive Howard, Jason Richardson, Chris Duhon and Earl Clark in the proposed deal.
- The Magic would get Brook Lopez, Luke Walton, Damion James, Shelden Williams, Armon Johnson and three first-round picks — two from the Nets and a lottery protected first from the Clippers.
- The Cavaliers would get Kris Humphries, Quentin Richardson, Sundiata Gaines, a first round pick from the Nets and three million in cash. The Clippers would receive MarShon Brooks.
According to sources, the complicated deal is “almost done.”
After acquiring Steve Nash, the Lakers intend to keep its core of Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum together next season, according to a source.
Bynum has been involved in trade rumors for Dwight Howard, while Gasol has been on the block since December.
The Magic have sought the inclusion of more pieces beyond Bynum in a trade for Howard, such as the ability to absorb at least one problematic contract.
Continuing to improve their draft assets, the Houston Rockets have traded the No. 14 pick and Samuel Dalembert to the Milwaukee Bucks for the 12th selection, Shaun Livingston, Jon Leuer and Jon Brockman.
The Rockets already had acquired the No. 18 pick from the Minnesota Timberwolves for Chase Budinger and the draft rights to Lior Eliyahu.
Sources have told ESPN.com‘s Marc Stein that the Rockets are hoping to acquire enough assets to entice the Magic to trade Dwight Howard to them.
Dwight Howard still prefers a trade from the Magic, according to a source.
Orlando announced that the tenures of Stan Van Gundy and Otis Smith were over on Monday, but Howard still seeks a trade before the start of the season.
The Nets are considered the frontrunner, but “it is not going to be a one-horse race,” the source said.
The Mavericks and Knicks are also in the conversation, while the Lakers and Clippers are as well to a lesser extent.
The Orlando Magic have parted ways with head coach Stan Van Gundy and general manager Otis Smith, the team announced in a statement Monday afternoon.
Stan Van Gundy, Dwight Howard
The ouster of Van Gundy ends a tumultuous time for the Magic. In April, Van Gundy himself said that Howard had gone to Orlando management and said he would no longer play for the coach.
“I was told it was true by people in our management,” Van Gundy said in April. “So right from the top.”
Howard has denied he ever spoke to management on the subject or laid out an ultimatum that it was either he or Van Gundy.
Magic CEO Alex Martins was asked if the franchise may trade Dwight Howard this offseason.
“We’ll cross that bridge when it comes to it,” said Martins. “The number one goal is to get him to sign an extension.” But Martins added that “necessary decisions will be made” if Howard does not sign an extension this offseason.
The franchise was in a similar situation with Howard ahead of the March trade deadline. Howard is eligible to become a free agent in 2013 if he doesn’t sign an extension.
Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard will undergo back surgery on Friday morning in Los Angeles to repair a herniated disk, effectively ending his season and eliminating him from participation in the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, Howard’s agent said on Thursday night.
“It hurts (emotionally),” Howard told ESPN the Magazine’s Chris Broussard.
“That’s the first thing — it hurts. And then with people saying and thinking I’m quitting on my team. This is a real issue. I tried to play through it and it just made my back worse.”
Howard has been complaining of back problems since early March, but it was not until Los Angeles-based spine surgeon Dr. Robert Watkins examined him last week that the herniated disk was discovered.