Every morning, we compile the links of the day and dump them here… highlighting the big storyline. Because there’s nothing quite as satisfying as a good morning dump.
A four-team trade that would send Dwight Howard to the Los Angeles Lakers is complete, multiple sources told ESPN on Thursday night.
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 Bynumand Jason Richardson, and the Magic will getArron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic and one protected future first-round pick from each of the three teams.
In addition, the Magic will be getting other pieces, including 76ers No. 1 draft pick Moe Harkless, a source told Stein.
Sources close to the process told Stein and ESPNLosAngeles.com’s Ramona Shelburne that a trade call with the league office has been scheduled for Friday to secure the necessary NBA approval to make the deal official.
I spent part of last night breaking this trade down for Crossover Chronicles. Here’s the most relevant part as the Celtics are concerned, at least in the short-term:
If Doug Collins has any luck in screwing Andrew Bynum’s head on straight, then the Atlantic Division is suddenly a bloodbath with the Sixers and Bynum (and Jason Richardson), the re-loaded Boston Celtics, the much improved (at least offensively) Brooklyn Nets and the New York Knicks. Sorry Toronto, you don’t get to play.
Andrew Bynum is a temperamental, immature, man-child. When he’s un-glued, he has the potential to destroy everything you’re trying to do. When he’s focused and performing, however, he’s the league’s second best center. And this is a contract year for him. He’s looking at max money next summer from someone, so the Sixers have a chance to pay him a ton of money, or sign-and-trade him for other assets.
Orlando is blowing it all up, so they clearly don’t care to get Bynum or anyone else. They’re taking back players because they have to. They’re getting 3 first rounders in this thing and they see no need to pay any particular player “star” money in the near future. You might not like the deal for Orlando, but their goal wasn’t to get equal value for Howard… they just wanted him gone, and they wanted some chips for the future.
And then there’s LA….
The Lakers have once again managed to pull off a heist. To add Dwight Howard to their roster without giving up both Bynum and Pau Gasol is just another lopsided deal that benefits the Lakers. They’ll now have Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard in their starting line up.
The names there are kind of ridiculous. As Celtics fans, we can only hope that Nash, Gasol and Kobe all start to show some of the wear and tear that guys their age are supposed to show.
Actually, here’s a better “best case” scenario from the Boston perspective:
The Lakers are, as everyone expects, pretty good. But they don’t match up well against the Oklahoma City Thunder. Kendrick Perkins keeps Howard in check (aside: Perk should send Dwight a fruit basket… having Dwight in LA suddenly means Perk is quite valuable in OKC), Russell Westbrook torches Nash, the Lakers have no answer for Kevin Durant, and Kobe Bryant starts jacking up 30 shots a game again as the Lakers lose the series. Then, Dwight is wowed in free agency by the Dallas Mavericks, and chooses to leave the Lakers… leaving the Lakers with nothing to show for their trade.
It’s a dream scenario for us C’s fans, whose hatred for other teams should go Lakers first, everyone else second. IF the Lakers get to the Finals and IF Miami goes back instead of the Celtics, all of you LeBron haters who get crazy when we even post a picture of his sneakers better nut up and tolerate him for a series… because I’ll take LeBron’s second ring over Kobe’s sixth and the Lakers’ 17th. I’d root for a team of reincarnated dictators coached by Satan against the Lakers. I don’t care what it takes, the Lakers can’t catch the Celtics in championships.
So, in a nutshell: the Lakers pulled another fast one, we’re all now HUGE OKC fans, and we’re hoping Dwight shafts the Lakers next summer. That’d make this all worth it.
The rest of the links: