Dwight Howard became the center of rumors and controversies after the Houston Rockets’ disappointing loss in the first round of the Western Conference playoff series against the Golden State Warriors.
The Warriors managed to defeat the Rockets even without the reigning MVP, Stephen Curry. Rockets interim coach J.B. Bickerstaff, who once called the team ‘broken’, decided to leave the team and look for a new job. Many have speculated that his decision had something to do with the Rockets performance and the way they play as a team.
Howard, who played the past three seasons with the Houston Rockets, has a player option worth $23.2 million for the 2016-17 season. It is expected that Howard will not pick up the option and will enter the free-agent market, looking for a max contract that could pay him $30 million per season.
Based on a previous report, Houston Rockets stars Dwight Howard and James Harden were having a hard time playing together resulting for a poor team performance. Both superstars wanted to be the main focus in the Rockets’ offensive end. There were speculations saying that one superstar should leave the team if they want to have a brighter future in the next season.
However, the Rockets’ center revealed that he is still undecided regarding his plan in the upcoming off-season.
“That part (whether to opt out) hasn’t even crossed my mind,” Howard said via Houston Chronicles. “I was very upset to lose to Golden State the way we did. It irked me we didn’t have a great season. We have two great players in James Harden and myself on the same team that were not able to be great this year together.
“I want to come into next season with the mentality to dominate from the preseason to wherever we end up as far as the playoffs. I can’t focus on free agency. I want to make sure my body is right. I want to change the perception that I don’t take this game seriously. This is my life. I want to win. I don’t want to finish my career and not be up on that podium.”
According to a report by Jonathan Faigen of the Houston Chronicles, Dwight Howard said that he believed that he will succeed together with his team mate James Harden once they both learn to put down their egos and pride.
“I think we can (succeed together),” Howard said. “I believe we can. Both of us have to put our egos and our pride to the side and say, “Hey, we need each other to win.’ That’s the only way we’re going to win.”
If James Harden and Dwight still choose to play together next season, the Houston Rockets should hire a coach that can unleash the full potential of the two superstars. He must implement the right strategy that will provide a good chemistry not only for Harden and Howard, but for the whole Houston Rockets team.
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