Lakers analyst and NBA Hall of Famer James Worthy took some time to talk about the upcoming Lakers season this morning, and one of the main topics was newly acquired center Dwight Howard. In case you were living on Mars for the last year and a half, Howard didn’t exactly depart Orlando on the most ceremonious of terms.
Worthy, who spent his entire career with the Lakers, wasn’t too thrilled with how Howard strung along the Magic organization in order to get them to trade him. The 1988 NBA Finals Most Valuable Player stated that that kind of attitude won’t work too well in Los Angeles.
“We’ve had all the best centers. (Dwight’s) got to realize that, one, this is not Orlando. This is the Lakers. We work quietly and methodically. There are no distractions outside of the locker room. Everything is dealt with on the inside.”
While the Lakers have had their fair share of public feuds in the past (see Shaq, Kobe), there are definitely higher expectations in Los Angeles when it comes to the attitude of the players. Fans are quick to turn on a player if they think he is disrespecting the team. Even Kobe Bryant, who might be the most revered star in L.A. since Magic Johnson, heard some boos after demanding a trade prior to the 2007-08 season.
Worthy hopes that Howard will leave the ego and the attitude at the door once he suits up for the Lakers.
“Who said this, I don’t like this coach. To me, that’s nonsense. Your job is to come in and play and deal with the situation that’s there.”
Still, all prior thoughts and feelings Worthy may have had towards Howard are out the window now that he’s a member of the Lakers. But that doesn’t mean he doesn’t expect great things from the 3-time Defensive Player of the Year. After all, Dwight has some mighty big shoes to fill.
“We already have one Superman in this town.”
Worthy also talked about Steve Nash, and why he feels he will be the biggest difference-maker for the team this season.