March 3, 2012; Orlando FL, USA; Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard (12) high fives during the second half against the Milwaukee Bucks at Amway Center. Orlando Magic defeated the Milwaukee Bucks 111-98. Mandatory Credit: Kim Klement-US PRESSWIRE

NBA Trades and Free Agency: Dwight Howard will commit to extension with Lakers

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Dennis Wierzbicki-US PRESSWIRE

The Los Angeles Lakers and the Orlando Magic are still working on a deal that would send Dwight Howard to L.A.

Howard, who previously said the Brooklyn Nets was the only team he would extend with beyond next season, is now committed to an extension with the Lakers as well, according to Jarrod Rudolph of RealGM.

The potential trade between the Lakers and Magic would more than likely have to involve a third team. Right now the team trying to be the third wheel in a Howard deal is the Cleveland Cavaliers.

In the potential trade between these three teams, the Cavaliers would receive Bynum and the Magic would get Anderson Varejao and multiple draft picks.

Howard going to the Lakers has really always been the move that made the most sense for him. If he wants a ring, given the current landscape of the league and potential destinations for him, the Lakers are the right spot.

There were some rumors that Howard would not want to go to the Lakers because he would be the second-fiddle to Kobe Bryant but that doesn’t look to be the case anymore.

After acquiring Steve Nash earlier this month, the Lakers could possibly be considered title favorites with Nash, Kobe, Howard and Pau Gasol.

Howard’s health is still a concern though and he might not be ready to play by the start of next season. That isn’t the end of the world for the Lakers if he goes there but he’d definitely have to get to 100 percent for them to compete for a title with him.

Howard sent direct messages on Twitter a few days ago describing how he can barely walk right now and Orlando is not being totally forthright about his injury.

The Lakers are ready to make this trade and the Cavaliers probably are too and would love to team Bynum up with their young core of Kyrie Irving, Dion Waiters and Tristan Thompson.

Orlando is likely the team that will be last to say “yes” on this. The Houston Rockets still consider themselves very much in the mix to trade for Howard and still could muster up a better package of young players and picks to send the Magic.

Orlando has said before too that they are not in any hurry to get a deal done soon. So while the Lakers may be anxious to finalize this soon, we may have to wait a little longer before we see where Howard will end up.

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Tags: Anderson Varejao Andrew Bynum Cleveland Cavaliers Dwight Howard Houston Rockets Kobe Bryant Los Angeles Lakers Orlando Magic Steve Nash

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