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Warriors Making Their Dwight Howard Pitch

UPDATED: The Warriors are definitely interested in landing Dwight Howard if at all possible. It’s a long shot, to be sure. But Golden State doesn’t seem at all deterred by Howard’s propensity for drama, his injuries, or his wanting to play for other teams.

“Are you kidding?” one source said. “He’s the best center in the game.”

Golden State officials - Warriors co-owner Joe Lacob, general manager Bob Myers along with head coach Mark Jackson – are meeting with Howard in Los Angeles today in efforts to convince him the Warriors present his best chance of winning. Point guard Stephen Curry won’t be at the meeting, but he has reached out to Howard, using his star power to try to lure the game’s best center.

According to sources, the Warriors are willing to offer Andrew Bogut along with Klay Thompson or Harrison Barnes. But the sell is to lure Dwight Howard with the prospect of a loaded lineup that features Curry, Thompson AND Barnes. The Warriors could trade Bogut and the expiring contracts of Richard Jefferson or Andris Biedrins to give the Lakers major cap relief heading into next offseason. Golden State, which can only sign Howard via sign-and-trade, believes that is the best offer Los Angeles will receive.

But first they have to convince Howard. Golden State has some favorable strengths to pitch:

* Howard will have no concerns getting the ball. The Warriors offer a style similar to his Magic squad that went to the finals – shooters on the outside giving him room to work on the inside. Golden State is stocked with unselfish players who will happily feed Howard, especially since his success will make life easier for them

* Curry represents a bonafide yet amenable star to play alongside Howard, something he didn’t have in Orlando or Los Angeles. With the Magic, he didn’t have a dominant player to run with in. With the Lakers, the star player rode him hard, which didn’t seem to sit well with Howard. If D12 is at all in search of peace and a drama-free environment, the Warriors might look appealing. (Houston perhaps offers the same in James Harden). Of course, many think Howard likes the drama.

* The Warriors made it to the Western Conference semifinals with numerous obstacles. They gave the Spurs the most problems in the West and have the pieces to play multiple styles. Right now, Golden State is looking like one of the better teams in the West. Add Howard and they instantly become an elite, challenging OKC and San Antonio. Can Houston, the presumed front runner in the D12 sweepstakes, make the same claim? Are Atlanta and Dallas just a piece away? Do the Lakers have enough left in the tank?

* I still say don’t sleep on the religious angle. A locker room full of Christians and a preacher coach might sound good to Howard, who came into the league saying he would evangelize so hard they would put a cross on the NBA logo. Howard is hardly the zealot he was when he entered the league, but I would not be surprised at all if Mark Jackson made that part of the pitch.

The Warriors are the underdog, no doubt. The Lakers can pay him the most money and may give him the best chance at a title. But if he really is off the Lakers, and coach Mike D’Antonio, Houston seems like an ideal fit and is reportedly his top choice. Dallas is an opportunity to start from scratch and have the team built around him. Ditto for Atlanta, his hometown.

It’s going to take a monumental pitch from Golden State to get D12 on board. Then they’d have to get the Lakers on board. But of course, the very fact that they’re in the mix means the Warriors have already won, in Lacob’s eyes.

Marcus Thompson

  • Cyrus

    Is this official??? I would never trade Klay or Barnes that’s our future.

  • Dave

    Whether we land Dwight Howard or not it feels great to have an Owner that’s committed to winning. Larry Ellison who?

  • frank

    oh hell no not klay or barnes.

  • Chris

    THE RELIGIOUS ANGLE!?!? DWIGHT HOWARD HAS FATHERED AT LEAST 6 KIDS BY 6 DIFFERENT WOMEN!

    WHAT A ROLE MODEL!

    http://blacksportsonline.com/home/2013/04/dwight-howard-tells-fan-he-doesnt-have-5-baby-mamas-when-in-reality-he-does/

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  • salinas warriors

    Bogut n lee n maybe rush don’t give ur 2014 draft pick there’s a lot of good players coming out its like the james wade era I know u been wanting d.howard for some time now he is a beast that’s forsure & we can’t stop u guys from trading thompson barnes curry if y’all want too so its whatevers just get that title if u do ending up trading barnes I hope y’all try to get jabari parker when he comes out in college I been on this kid since middle school he’s like a durant james kind of a player

  • Ohhhjohnny

    The whole “Lakers get cap relief” is not an issue because everyone except for Nash and perhaps a resigned Howard essentially comes off next off season anyways.

  • Steven R

    Dave what does that have to do with anything? The Warriors are also shopping David Lee and tried to get Bargnani for him? Yeah that makes it seem like the Warriors are looking to win right there. Fortunately New York traded away lesser talent to get Bargnani.

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  • earl monroe

    The toronto Gm did not want to take back a large contract so the Knick offer looked better, I prefer Lee to Bargnani though, you still have to win regular season games to get into the playoffs and Lee is very helpful in that effort, if you are trying to dump salary then getting rid of Lee makes sense plus Ezeli is hurt and Landry is probably gone so you need Lee

  • sam

    Warriors were trying to get Bargnani’s expiring deal, to work a 3 way trade.

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  • Butch Cousins

    The Bogut, Jefferson, Biedrins package is too good to happen. It benefits the W’s way 2 much. The Lakers would be foolish & in the same division!
    It would provide a great line-up for next season. Young & explosive w/ a defensive presence. I don’t see it happening. Howard goes to Houston is my bet.

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  • Dave

    This is the other Dave. If they trade Lee for some garbage it is going to be a disaster. Dwight Howard is a drama queen.

  • Dave

    Do a three way and send Lee back to the Knicks. You still get your Barganni garbage if that’s what you want.

  • wg

    if there’s a sign-and-trade, howard gets his extra year and $30m. if howard decides he definitely wants out of LA, LA could say, we’ll do a sign-and-trade only with the warriors (and not with houston). then howard has to decide between houston (and one fewer year) and GSW (with the extra year). that’s not a clearcut decision, as GSW is on the rise.

    if you’re LA, you probably prefer bogut + barnes-or-klay over a cap exception (that would come from a houston sign-and-trade).

    from a fan perspective, i’d prefer not to have to root for howard.

  • Gunner

    @wg: Howard is not going to get an extra year and $30M in a sign-and-trade. Therefore, the Lakers have zero leverage if he chooses to go to teams with cap room ie Houston/Atlanta/Dallas. He will gain nothing by having the Lakers do a sign-and-trade with the teams above.

  • Gunner

    Again, I am calling the Lakers bluff on willing to let Howard to walk away for nothing. Bought + their choice of Biedrins/Jefferson + future 2nd round pick or they can let Howard walk for nothing. This deal let them stay competitive with Bogut at center for another year, and keeps their wet dream of James joining them next year alive.

    @Lacob and @Myers, stay strong and call their bluff!

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  • http://mercurynews.com antispy3

    If they are serious could you see Bogut & lee for Howard? Of course the Lake show would favor an expiring contract. . .Bogut & Jefferson? I was joking with friends earlier in the year that the W’s would offer Bogut for Howard but they are such haters (Dallas natives) that they rejected this in less than principal.

    But when it’s all said & done Howard will rationalize why Houston (& he won’t be far from wrong. they recently traded robinson, who will be on his third team, to the Jailblazers for “cap relief”) is closer to making a playoff run with him on board. harden, howard, Scola, Parsons & the role players & perimeter shooting Houston boasts make them the leader in the clubhouse. The fact Howard would earn more greenbacks with Houston than with the W’s has to be attractive to him.

    But if the Lake show wants to salvage something from all this Bogut & an expiring Jefferson deal next year would render consideration by, perhaps, ‘Melo for next year. But the Lake show needs other pieces in order to become more attractive to the 2014 FA class. . .

    Wg, the Lake show may have no choice. In order to, like i say, salvage anything resembling “fair value” for Howard Bogut & the expiring Jefferson deal might be the only deal they can get. Period.

    If the W’s have to relinquish Barnes, Thompson or anyone other than Bogut that would end all the “happy, shiny” talk. . .

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  • http://Twitter.com/jmp23 JmP

    Can’t trade any of our starters accept bogut…..

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  • GSWFan

    Hope it’s not true. I can’t see what D. Howard is going to do for us. Klay and Barnes are only getting BETTER.

  • deano

    This Veneration of the Howard makes sense ONLY if GSW has very serious doubts about Bogut’s return to health.We have seen that Bogut, when even 75% healthy, makes the Warriors a Championship caliber team.

    Whereas at this time, for this team, Howard is all spec. He once WAS the best center in the NBA. But now, with GSW, with a roster depleted of the players who were traded to get him? Howard is not the sure shot pivot presence who can get the Warriors into a Championship Series. A healthy Bogut is. We’ve already seen it.

  • Stan

    Lee and Klay for Howard? NO brainer. Sounds to good to be true.

  • The Wisdom Cow

    I’m with Gunner. No way should Barnes or Clay be offered. They lack leverage, and if Howard walks they are in trouble. I’d think they would jump at Bogut + playable bench players.

    Though, in truth, I’d love to give them Lee for him, then play Barnes at PF. Imagine the quality minutes Bogut could give spotting Howard.

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  • Young

    Ima say this once…

    I’d rather loose with the team we had last year than win with that guy…

    Period

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  • Niners in 2012

    If we somehow end up with Curry-Klay-Iggy-DHoward, we’re favorites in the West.

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  • WarriorRaiderA’s

    With Bogut, Jefferson, & Beidrins all expiring next year, the universe is not really lining up for us to acquire Dwight this year. Especially when word is Curry, Klay, & Barnes are off the market! Lee’s contract makes him a hard trade, so good luck with getting the Lake show, who always look for trade victims to rob blindly, so I just dont see it, unless Dwight really wants to come to East Oakland ( lets not pretend they will be in the new arena on the SF water front any time soon) with out his boy Mike Malone on our bench anymore, but if some how it did happen that way, it would probably take, Bogut, Rush, Jefferson, and a contract to Lakers liking for Jack as well, and they would want to unload potty contracts to boot. I think the Warriors should just wait for everyone to expire next year and make a run at Lebron! Anyway, Bogut will be just fine at center!!!

  • Ewok

    I really don’t know the very picture about this situation but i really think there’s more to it than what we see especially on the matter of expiring contracts next year, which would probably bring us back to zero. I don’t know.

    But here’s what i know. I am so sick and tired of seeing this franchise build itself up to World recognition and destroy, dismantle, disassemble itself the next following year.

    My gosh, aren’t we overacting lately? Dwight Howard may be the best center in the World but is he a good fit? He surely didn’t fit with the talent laden team in the Lakers?

    He didnt fit with a veteran coach in Antoni, just how do we expect him to react on a young coach like Jackson? and just how would he be effective with Barnes or Thompson gone?

    It’s no secret Curry is not 100 percent health wise. It is what it is.

    The Lakers with either Barnes or Thompson plus Bogut autmotically makes them a stronger team than us. Think about it, Kobe, Nash, Gasol, World Peace, Jamison. Do the Math!

    I say retain the present line up. Add Al Jefferson in there and were set.

    The good side of the deal? If the deal pushes through, then i will not not just be a Warriors fan, but a big Laker fan as well for the simple fact that it is a Warrior team as well.

    The Warriors are being the Warriors again. It needs some strong exorism.

  • http://www.topsportsbetting.cu.cc Bureton Haynese

    is named. Many thanks!

  • DubsDuds

    I would include low IQ, layup challenge Klay Thompson in a trade for D12 in a heartbeat. There are plenty of these players in the NBA and D-League

  • Caleb

    I can’t take credit for this idea but I was just reading an article on PBT and somebody asked this question in the comments: Theoretically, could a team besides the Lakers with cap space sign and trade Howard to GS?

    This would seem like pure genius if there was another team out there with cap space who would appreciate the Bogut deal. Dwight is an unrestricted free agent so I do not understand why everybody seems to think that the Lakers have any leverage. They have none. If Howard wants to leave then he is going to leave. It only cost the Lakers Bynum to get him in the first place. Why would they not rather have Bogut back in return than nothing at all. I think they are just bluffing. Of course they are not going to say that they have any interest in a sign & trade while they still think they have a chance to keep him. But if he tells them he is leaving no matter what then I can’t imagine why they would not take the Bogut deal.

    And if the Lakers won’t take the deal then what if there is another team out there with cap space who would jump at the opportunity to get Andrew Bogut? There are not very many good centers in the league. When healthy Bogut is one of the best.
    If Dwight decides he wants to go to the Warriors then no other team including the Lakers has any leverage. Seems like someone out there should be happy to settle for the consolation prize – Andrew Bogut – possibly even one of the teams who are chasing Howard after they know they have lost out on him.

    I would not include Barnes or Thompson in any deal no matter what. Those two guys are our future and the idea of landing Howard is only exciting if he gets to play next to them.

    When you think about it, it could almost be more like a “Trade & Sign” actually. If the Warriors knew for sure that Dwight was going to sign with them, then really all they would have to do is get under the salary cap. They could have a fire sale and practically give away Bogut (possibly even while having the other team agreeing to take one of our expiring contracts of Jefferson or Biedrins), Rush, Ezeli or possibly even David Lee to make enough room to just sign Dwight outright. They wouldn’t need the Lakers help for any of it.

    There would be absolutely NO REASON at all to give away our future stars in Barnes and Thompson. So many teams out there need a good center including the Rockets, Mavs, Hawks, Portland, and of course the Lakers who do not have nearly as much leverage as they think.

    The Warriors can get under the cap without having to even consider losing Barnes or Thompson. I don’t know the exact numbers and I could be wrong, but it seems possible to either do a Sign & Trade with a different team and/or have a Miami Marlins type fire sale if the Warriors know that Howard is committing to signing with them.

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