Dwight Howard will NOT get his wish. He will not play next season in Brooklyn.
Sources close to the trade talks between the Magic and several NBA teams told SheridanHoops.com that the Nets dropped out of the bidding this afternoon, deciding to retain Brook Lopez, Kris Humphries and MarShon Brooks — the three key pieces they were willing to include (along with multiple first-round picks) in their trade offer for Orlando’s disgruntled superstar.
The Magic remained engaged in discussions with the Houston Rockets, Los Angeles Lakers and other teams, but Brooklyn was on a tight timetable as Lopez was prepared to sign a max offer sheet with another team. The deal he got from the Nets is for four years and $60.8 million.
So, Brooklyn as Dwight’s future destination?
Fuhgeddaboudit. Unless he somehow stays with the Magic into next season, at which time the whole Lopez scenario can be revisited Jan. 15 — the date Lopez and other players who signed this summer with over-the-cap teams become trade-eligible.
The Nets will now be capped out next summer if Howard becomes an unrestricted free agent, meaning they would only be able to acquire him through a sign-and-trade. And if Howard plays out his contract and hits the open market next summer, the Dallas Mavericks would immediately become the favorites to land him.