Lakers Trade Rumors: Dwight Howard’s Desire to Be Free Agent Shouldn’t Deter LA

As it is now, the Los Angeles Lakers face an uncertain future at the center position, so they might as well face it with Dwight Howard.

The Lake Show have seemingly been steadily pursuing Howard, even as the rumors fluctuate between whether or not Howard would be willing to sing an extension with the Lakers.

Howard's agent recently put an end to these rumors by flat-out saying his client was determined to hit the free-agent market, according to ESPN's Ric Bucher.

While that bit of news could easily destroy many a teams desire to trade for Howard, it has rightfully done nothing to slow down the Lakers. At least if ESPN's Dave McMenamin and Ramona Shelburne's report is to be believed, and there is every reason to believe it.

The Lakers have to like their chances of locking Howard up long term if they acquire him in a trade. They would be able to offer him more money than any other team, and who would turn down more money to be on a team that wasn't the Lakers?

This franchise has made a habit of winning championships, and it plays in the bright lights and endorsement-rich paradise of Los Angeles.

While all of this makes a convincing argument, who knows if that is enough to sway Howard? If there is one thing that Howard has proven quite thoroughly, it is that predicting where he will desire to play in the future is an exercise in futility. 

So why, then, should the Lakers continue to pursue this trade? Well, because their current center is Andrew Bynum, and any trade that would net them Howard is sure to center around Bynum.

Bynum is also set to be a free agent next offseason. L.A. can prevent that by negotiating an extension with the talented big man, but who is to say he won't rebuff their efforts and test the market himself?

Even if he does sign, it will do little to end the Lakers' uncertainty at the center position.

Andrew Bynum...

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