Dwight Howard Wanted Lakers To Amnesty Kobe Bryant

Dwight Howard Wanted Lakers To Amnesty Kobe BryantAs Dwight Howard’s departure from the Los Angeles Lakers moves further into the past, more reasons are surfacing as to why the big man chose to leave Tinseltown. Sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne and Marc Stein that a potentially delayed power shift in Lakers nation helped lead Howard to the Houston Rockets:

‘Future face of the franchise’

The Lakers, almost from the moment Howard arrived in August 2012, had gone to great lengths to assure the 27-year-old that they saw him as the future face of the franchise and that the torch would be passed from Bryant to him in short order.

But with Bryant saying publicly just a week before free agency that he was thinking of playing at least two or three more seasons, it was hard for Howard to envision when he would assume that role, sources said.

The ESPN report goes on to state that Howard’s representatives brought up the possibility of cutting ties with Kobe Bryant in the offseason, saying “Howard’s camp at one point asked the Lakers whether they were at least considering releasing Bryant through the league’s amnesty provision.”


‘Cash-strapped’

Howard had envisioned a potential partnership with Chris Paul over the summer, but the cash-strapped Lakers couldn’t make that happen without some clever manipulation of their financial books. Those possible moves were either stymied by potential trade partners or overruled by the Lakers themselves.

The possibility of the Lakers shedding Bryant’s $30 million-plus salary through the amnesty clause was talked about in the rumor mill shortly after his season came to an abrupt end due to a torn Achilles but never seemed to carry much weight in L.A.’s camp. Howard tried barking up that tree, and in doing so, he helped fuel his exit.

Was signing with the Houston Rockets the right move for Dwight Howard? And what about the Lakers?

Source: Zach Buckley | Bleacher Report

Image: Yahoo! Sports

Doc Rivers To Coach Los Angeles Clippers

Doc Rivers To Coach Los Angeles ClippersAfter much speculation surrounding a potential move, the Los Angeles Clippers have made it official and acquired head coach Doc Rivers from the Boston Celtics, pending approval from the league.

‘Make the switch’

Jackie MacMullan of ESPN Boston has the news:

Sources confirmed on Sunday that the Clippers will sign Rivers to a three-year, $21 million contract. They will send a first-round pick as compensation for the Boston Celtics, who have agreed to release the coach from the three years, $21 million he has remaining on his deal with the club.

Contrary to previous reports, according to league and team sources, the Celtics have been complicit all along in assisting Rivers make the switch from Boston to Los Angeles.

Brad Turner of the Los Angeles Times confirmed the report, saying the deal is for a 2015 unprotected first-round draft choice.


‘Time to part ways’

With an original scenario that had included a trade for Kevin Garnett, it was noted by MacMullan that NBA commissioner David Stern has objected “to the appearance that the KG deal (for DeAndre Jordan) and Rivers were related.” ESPN’s Marc Stein is also reporting that the league does not intend to budge from its original stance as it pertains to Garnett.

As for what Rivers’ staff may look like, Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports is reporting that Alvin Gentry is a strong candidate, but is still in the running for a head coaching position of his own.

The Clippers, of course, won a franchise-record 56 games during the 2012-13 regular season, but after falling to the Memphis Grizzlies in the first round of the NBA playoffs, the organization decided it was time to part ways with Vinny Del Negro, electing not to renew the polarizing head coach’s contract.

The Doc Rivers deal — is this a good decision for both Celtics and Clippers? Feel free to share your thoughts and opinions with us!

 

Source: Tim Keeney | Bleacher Report

Image: Los Angeles Times