There are still two weeks until the actual season starts, but the NBA has been dominating sports headlines this week (give or take a PED-positive MLB MVP and an incredibly worthy Heisman winner) with rumors, rejected trades and big name signings. And yesterday brought another twist in the ongoing saga of Where Will Chris Paul Go, when the NBA once again rejected a proposed three-team trade between the Los Angeles Lakers, Houston Rockets and New Orleans Hornets. As The National Post's Bruce Arthur summarized, "The NBA screwed Houston, screwed NO/Chris Paul, made a joke of governance, and mayyy have helped the Lakers get Dwight Howard." Are the Nets screwed now as well?
Earlier this week, it was reported that Orlando Magic star Dwight Howard wanted to be traded to the soon-to-be Brooklyn Nets. Hours after that report, the Nets were accused of tampering by meeting with Howard without permission from Orlando. Howard has now formally asked for a trade. The Lakers, discouraged by having two trades rejected by the league under questionable circumstances, have now pulled out of talks for Chris Paul.
And while the Los Angeles Clippers are now considered the strongest contenders for Paul, the Lakers have turned their full attention to getting Howard, the best center in the league. The Lakers have already shown they are willing to trade star Pau Gasol, and the team is serious enough about getting Howard that they've already traded popular forward Lamar Odom (and his reality star wife Khloe Kardashian) to the Dallas Mavericks to free up room and get draft picks for trade bait. And now another team has entered the sweepstakes: the Derrick Rose-led Chicago Bulls are also trying to get Howard, and may be able to make the best offer, according to Bleacher Report: "The Bulls can not only offer the Orlando Magic the best trade package for their superstar center, but the best fit for Howard in Chicago."
And then there are the Nets, who have...Brooke Lopez and Kris Humphries. While they do have draft picks to spare, the Bulls have better young talent to offer, and the Lakers have bigger stars to offer. It seems that the only way Howard ends up with the Nets is if he really wants to play in Brooklyn for the forceable future. Which, admittedly, is still possible: according to some reports, Howard has made the Nets his top destination.
After introducing center Tyson Chandler yesterday, the Knicks don't seem to be done making moves either: today they signed veteran guard Mike Bibby to a one-year deal. And the team is eyeing an even bigger prize: according to the Post, they are in talks for a three-team trade that would bring offensive powerhouse Jamal Crawford back to NYC.