The city of Houston has had some of the best centers in the history of the Association, over the past thirty-plus years, including Basketball Hall Of Fame Members Moses Malone and Hakeem Olajuwon, as well as All-Star Yao Ming, played for the hometown Rockets. Another name joined that list on Friday as the Houston Chronicle has reported that the most dominant center of this era, All-Star big man Dwight Howard, has decided to sign a long-term pact with Houston.
The man called “Superman” actually broke the news on his Twitter account, writing: “I’ve decided to become a member of the Houston Rockets. I feel its the best place for me and I am excited about joining the Rockets and I’m looking forward to a great season. I want to thank the fans in Los Angeles and wish them the best.”
Howard had played his first eight seasons with the Orlando Magic, the team that drafted him with the first pick of the 2004 NBA Draft, directly out of high school. Although he declined to exercise his option that would have made him a Free Agent last summer, the Magic, felt their chances of signing him this month were quite slim. They sent him to the Los Angeles Lakers in three team deal involving the Philadelphia 76ers as well.
Howard was not a good fit in Los Angeles, as there were not enough balls on the court to keep the big man and All-Star guard Kobe Bryant. The Lakers veteran averaged 27.3 points in the campaign, while Howard taking a back seat to the “Black Mamba” had his lowest scoring average since his third-year in Orlando.
The big man met with five teams this week and various reports stated that the Rockets and the Dallas Mavericks were two teams favored to sign him before any discussions took place. Numerous stories made the rounds on Thursday, that the Golden State Warriors were in the mix of the teams that had a chance to sign him. Instead D-12 chose the team with the best chance to get back into the Finals sooner than the other squads.