The NBA stirred some controversy when it announced the 75th Anniversary Team to celebrate the league’s 75th season — and failed to include Los Angeles Lakers center Dwight Howard among the best players in the history of the game.
Howard boasts a particularly impressive resume, featuring an NBA championship with L.A. in 2020, eight All-Star selections, and three consecutive Defensive Player of the Year awards from 2009-11, among other accolades.
But unlike four of his Lakers teammates — LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony — the 35-year-old center didn’t make the prestigious list. Howard called the snub “disrespectful” on Instagram shortly after the NBA made the 75th Anniversary Team public in October.
And head coach Frank Vogel stood behind his big man, saying Howard “for sure” should be on the list.
Over two weeks have passed since the announcement, but Howard was recently asked about his feelings surrounding the omission. The center said he has made peace with the snub, although still believes he should have made the cut, via Bleacher Report’s Taylor Rooks:
– I knew I wasn’t going to be on it.
– Politics. I already knew. I knew [as] soon [as] they made the 75 list, I say ‘Yeah, they ain’t going to put me on the 75 list. I might as well go and forget about it. Yeah.
– There was not even a small part of you that felt like you’re going to be on it?
– I knew that they was not going to put me on that list.
– But you do believe you deserve to be on it?
– I most definitely should be on that list, but it’s okay. It is so okay. I’m not upset about it. I was, probably for like 30 seconds. But I said, ‘You know what? Life is great. I’m alive. I’m still playing basketball in my 18th season. Who cares about a list made by people who have never bounced the basketball before. Who cares?’
Besides the current four Lakers stars, 18 players in total represented the Purple and Gold on the anniversary team.
Those included Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal; members of the legendary Showtime era, Magic Johnson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Bob McAdoo, and James Worthy; and those who came before them, Wilt Chamberlain, Jerry West, and Elgin Baylor, among others.
Paul Gasol joined Howard among the list’s notable omissions.
Howard tries to stay positive after latest Lakers loss
Howard has recently been displeased with more than just questionable selections to the NBA’s 75th Anniversary Team. After last week’s loss to the Portland Trail Blazers, the center called on the Lakers to play with more urgency if they want to compete for the title this year.
After a couple of strong games in response, the Lakers were then blown out again by the Minnesota Timberwolves. This time though, Howard tried to stay positive in order to help the team be better moving forward
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