Phil Jackson Does Not See Reason for Howard to Stay in L.A.

NBA: Playoffs-Los Angeles Lakers at Dallas MavericksThe Los Angeles Lakers’ first priority this off-season will be to re-sign Dwight Howard for the longterm, but 11-time champion Phil Jackson does not see a reason for Howard to stay.

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The Los Angeles Times writes that Jackson questioned whether or not this Lakers system can fit for Howard and if it would be smart for him to remain with the team. Howard said that he did not like how the coaching staff used him last season and if Mike D’Antoni continues to run the sidelines for the Lakers, he will face the same issue in the future.

On Tuesday, Phil Jackson suggested Dwight Howard might not have sufficient reason to return to theLakers this summer as a free agent.

“Would you?  If you felt like your game wasn’t going to be featured?” asked Jackson on the Dan Patrick Show.

“You have to play in to Dwight Howard.  You have to get back and reestablish him as the center that he potentially was going to be,” said Jackson. “This year … he had four or five less touches in the post. Most of the things he got in there were on the move.”

 

Although Jackson later stated that he does not blame D’Antoni for Howard’s role on the team, he did point the finger to those making the basketball decisions in Los Angeles.

A lot of Howard’s decision on whether or not he will stay with the Lakers will depend on how the team uses him moving forward. The center wants to become more of a focal point on the offensive end, but that will be hard considering the Lakers still have stars like Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol and Steve Nash in the lineup.

Howard will officially become a free agent come July 1.

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