Lakers Trade Rumors: Acquiring Dwight Howard Without an Extension Would Be Nuts

According to many reports, the Los Angeles Lakers still remain in the hunt for Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard.

That's not the surprise. The surprise is that Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak is willing to take on Howard and give up Andrew Bynum without a guarantee that Howard re-signs with the team.

That is nuts given what the Lakers are trying to accomplish.

Howard himself had publicly stated his willingness to re-sign with just one team—widely considered to be the Brooklyn Nets.

As Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News reports, however, that's not a concern of the Lakers:

“Lakers no longer demanding contract assurances from Dwight Howard in trade talks, reportedly” bad news for Nets

— Stefan Bondy (@NYDNInterNets) July 6, 2012 In addition to not requiring a commitment from Howard, the Lakers are willing to absorb salary, reportedly the $18.6 million owed to Jason Richardson for the next three years, according to Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times.

Key development in Lakers' pursuit of Dwight Howard: They're more open to taking back contract of G-F Jason Richardson (3 yrs, $18.6 mill).

— Mike Bresnahan (@Mike_Bresnahan) July 11, 2012 That's all fine with an extension from Howard, but it makes very little sense without it.

With Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Bynum, the Lakers are championship contenders for the next three years.

The same, naturally, goes for Howard if he's signed. If not, you’re banking on a one-year run at a championship—and then what?

If Howard would leave after one season, the Lakers are stuck with another bad contract in Richardson's and are really in the same boat that they are in right now.

Not only that, but the Lakers lose what is their biggest strength—superior length. Wi...

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