After following the Dwight Howard free agency drama, my silent hunch was confirmed this weekend with DH12’s transfer to the Houston Rockets.
Houston greats Hakeem Olajuwon and Clyde Drexler also made a pitch to convince Howard to join the Rockets’ young roster that includes James Harden and Jeremy Lin, a move which for sure made life easier for Houston’s GM Daryl Morey.
With Howard now joining the Rockets, it would be interesting to see how he can make an immediate impact for a franchise that had its last taste of NBA championship champagne in 1995.
Actually, the years 1994 and 1995 were the Rockets’ “golden era” in the NBA after winning back-to-back championships with Olajuwon literally at the center of it all.
Drexler joined the team at the start of the 1995 season for a championship chase which ended with Houston’s 4-0 Finals sweep of the Orlando Magic. The Magic back then led were by a young Shaquille O’Neal and Anfernee Hardaway.
With the Rockets, Howard can get the offensive attention he long wanted, something he didn’t have much with the Lakers last season due to the presence of resident superstar Kobe Bryant and veterans Pau Gasol, Steve Nash and Metta World Peace.
And while expectations are high for the Rockets come the 2013-2014 NBA season, my guess is that Howard will have to taste probably a year or two of disappointment with the Rockets before he could start collecting NBA rings.
For one, Howard is still far from Olajuwon’s status.
The “Dream” Olajuwon had his signature “dream shake” that even befuddled O’Neal and his long-time NBA nemeses David Robinson and Patrick Ewing during his heydays.
But for the 6’11” Howard, his offense normally comes by using brute strength, something that could easily be stopped when he gets sent to the free throw line, “Superman”s so-called NBA “Kryptonite”.
So for Howard’s NBA career “reboot”, it’s time to learn first from the “Dream” for another year or two. Once he “reinvents” himself, that’s the only time he can turn his championship dream to reality.
More on Howard’s reboot on Sunday.
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