Dwight Howard went from villain to hero quickly after helping the Los Angeles Lakers to a title back in 2020.
Howard’s first stint in Los Angeles went about as poorly as it could’ve, and after his unceremonious exit, he was booed by Lakers Nation every time he made his way back to town. However, he redeemed himself with the fan base when he accepted a role off the bench focusing on rebounding and blocking shots while also acting as the team’s biggest cheerleader on the bench.
The big man left in free agency following their title season, but soon found himself on a third tour in the Purple and Gold during the 2021-22 season. At that point, though, Howard’s athleticism had all but left him and he was far less effective in the same role.
After going unsigned in this past free agency period, it seemed like Howard’s playing days were over. However, with the 2022-23 season ongoing he announced that he’ll be taking his talents overseas to Taiwan via his Instagram account:
While Howard may no longer be able to keep up in the NBA, he should fare well internationally where players with his kind of experience tend to thrive. This is a happier outcome for Howard who admitted that he mulled retirement after going unsigned in the offseason.
If Howard’s NBA career is indeed over, he will undoubtedly be a first-ballot Hall of Famer when he is eligible. He has quite the resume, appearing in eight All-Star games while adding three Defensive Player of the Year awards to go along with multiple All-NBA teams.
The Laker faithful will always appreciate Howard for his role in their most recent championship and will be rooting for his success on his latest playing venture.
Dwight Howard recalls tough encounter with Kurt Rambis prior to 2019-20 season
There was some skepticism when it was announced that Howard would return to the Lakers for the 2019-20 season. Fans at that point had not gotten over his first stint, and the front office appears to have had some reservations as well.
Howard recounted a story where he met with Kurt Rambis who bluntly said he wasn’t the same player anymore. That forced Howard to change his attitude and get in line with what the team was trying to accomplish.
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