Why Dwight Howard Won’t Leave the L.A. Lakers in 2013 NBA Free Agency

Some will tell you that the Los Angeles Lakers took a risk in trading for Dwight Howard without guaranteeing that he'd be in purple and gold past this season. They had Andrew Bynum on an expiring deal, but odds are they could have got him to return, the thought isn't necessarily the same for Howard.

At one point or another Howard has voiced his desire to test the free-agency market, and it was obvious when he was with Orlando that he was willing to take less money in free agency if need be, especially when Houston was looking to trade for him and he threatened to walk down the road to Dallas in 2013 if they did.

This is bad news for the Lakers then, right? The guy they just traded to be the future of their franchise is going to look around at other teams if he's not happy. Well, it's not quite bad news yet.

Under the current collective bargaining agreement, it would be senseless for any player seeking a maximum deal to sign an extension before becoming a free agent, as he would get a four-year deal instead of five. Instead, every big-name player looking for a big deal will likely enter free agency before their team gives them a maximum deal.

In this case, the max contract that the Lakers can offer him is a five-year deal approaching $120 million. Meanwhile, any other team can offer him a four-year deal just south of $90 million. There aren't many people in this world with enough gall to walk away from $30 million of guaranteed money.

Obviously, the monetary ramifications are going to play a huge role in who Howard sings with, but at some point he's got to take a look at the future of each franchise involved and which ones give him the best chance of winning a title or three.

Aside from that, it doesn't seem like someone would plop down $20 million on a house if he was planning on leaving in 10 months.



So, Dwight Howard just purchased a home ...

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