Dwight Howard for Blake Griffin? I know the history of the Los Angeles Clippers and Los Angeles Lakers suggests that the Clippers are the Lakers doormat. Does that mean they also have to be their AAA farm team? Are they really considering trading a young and improving future star for a prima donna center who is on the decline? Please tell me that’s just a joke. If the Clippers really want Dwight Howard, outbid the other teams when he becomes a free agent this month. Don’t give up Blake Griffin. That’s insane!
Before you go and try to get Howard, go ask an Orlando Magic fan what they think of that idea. Oh, wait, you are. I live in the Orlando area. I have seen Howard’s entire career. At one time he was fantastic. But after back surgery and several years of people fawning over him, he is not the player he once was. And he will only get worse from here. Big men take a horrific beating in the NBA. All those fouls and beating and banging for rebounds and blocked shots take their toll. How many great big men contributed much past 32 or 33? Look at how much Shaquille O’Neal slowed down after he and Dwayne Wade hooked up to win Miami a title in 2006. After that he bounced from the Phoenix Suns, to the Cleveland Cavaliers to the Boston Celtics and was a shell of his former self.
Blake Griffin could be around and going to All-Star Games for the next decade. You send him to the Lakers, and he’ll be doing it in your same arena, only in purple and gold. Do you really want to see that? If Howard can rehab his back into decent shape, he might have two or three good years left. But with his attitude these days, he just isn’t worth the headaches. Do you want Dwight whining about how many touches he gets in a line-up that could have Chris Paul, Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett? Not to mention it could still have Jamal Crawford, Eric Bledsoe, and Chauncey Billups. Do you want to feed him the ball so he gets hacked and goes to the line and shoots two bricks?
Do you want a coach killer for your brand new coach? Ask Stan Van Gundy if he’d be interested in the job if you trade Griffin for Howard. My guess is he says “no thank you.” When looking at Howard, burn the tapes with him in Magic blue and black. That guy is gone forever. Look at him with the Lakers and tell me you’d rather have him than Griffin. I do not think you can.
Do not pull the trigger on this trade. This is one that will come back to haunt you much like when the Chicago Cubs traded Lou Brock for Ernie Broglio or when the Detroit Tigers traded John Smoltz for Doyle Alexander. Don’t do this.