Lakers news: Dwight Howard is ready for his second stint with the Los Angeles Lakers. After agreeing to sign a one-year non-guaranteed deal to return to the franchise, the eight-time All-Star is eager to prove himself to his teammates and to the rest of the league.
On Wednesday, Howard spoke to the media for the first time since joining the Lakers last week. He said that he’s return to the Purple and Gold is a great opportunity for him, and that his main goal is to help the team win a championship, per ClutchPoints’ Ryan Ward.
"My goal is just to win. Nothing else that matters. The only thing that matters is winning a championship."
But unlike his first go-around with the franchise, Howard will no longer be one of the best players on the team. In fact, it was made very clear by Lakers head coach Frank Vogel that he will play a limited role next season. Dwight understands this, but he also knows that the team expects him to still play at a high level, via Spectrum SportsNet.
“They just want me to be the best person I can be for this team. Defense, dominating the boards, dominating my position, you know, helping everybody out, talking. On offense, pick and roll, which is something that I think has been a misconception with a lot of people. People think I hate picking and rolling and stuff like that. But you know, whatever this team needs me to do, you know I’m willing to do it.”
Based on everything he’s been saying over the past couple of weeks, it seems that Howard is really laser focused on helping the Lakers win the title next season. However, one of the main concerns about Dwight throughout the course of his career is his tendency to become a distraction. He’s already said that he’s had time to reflect and that he’s a changed man, but how will he react to those distractions that happen off the court?
One of which is the recent friendly feud between Laker legends Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal. For some reason, Howard’s name got dragged in there even though he didn’t do anything. Still, he has no plans to engage any of those two in a social media beef.
"My job is to come here and help this team win, it’s not to get into any arguments with Shaq or Kobe or anybody. I don’t plan to let anything distract me from helping this team win a championship."
Howard is still despised by a lot of fans for leaving the team back in 2013. But he has a great opportunity to win their hearts back, and the best way to do that in Los Angeles? Win championships.
It’s not going to be easy for Dwight, but if everything that he’s been saying is true, then he might just be able to redeem himself to the franchise, the city, and its fans.
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