Mike D’Antoni Still Doesn’t Understand Dwight Howard Leaving Lakers
Dwight Howard did the unthinkable nearly a month ago. He left the city of angels to pair up with rising superstar James Harden. Los Angeles is normally the place where stars go to cement their legacy. Well, Howard went against the grain. It just never seemed to work in L.A. for the 7-time All-Star. Dwight was frustrated for the duration of the season. He didn’t receive the amount of touches he was accustom to in Orlando, but he should have saw that coming when playing with Kobe Bryant.
There’s a lot of factors that went into Howard’s decision, but there’s probably none bigger than the D’Antoni factor. Howard and D’Antoni never really saw eye to eye. It was just a bad mixture overall.
Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni is still baffled by Howard’s decision. He spoke with ESPN Los Angeles about the departure of Howard:
“It’s hard for me to sit here and criticize or even to understand why he left a place like L.A. That’s kind of mind-boggling a little bit, but that’s in his DNA and what he wants to do.”
D’Antoni would go on about the short-term and the fact that he still has Pau Gasol.
“Everybody has got to make that decision,” D’Antoni said. “You can debate it all you want. Only Dwight knows. Obviously he didn’t think he would be as happy here as he will be in Houston. That might be the case and he had to make that decision. There will be a lot of speculation, we tried it, it didn’t work out and we go forward. So be it. You hate it. Dwight’s one of the better centers in the league and it would have been a long-term thing, but I looked at it like, ‘OK, you don’t have Dwight but you got Pau [Gasol].’ So, we’ll see. In the short run, we’ll see what happens. In the long run, obviously 10 years from now Dwight might still be playing and maybe Pau is retired, but everybody has got to do [what's best for them].”
The feelings of the fans in L.A. were hurt when Dwight Howard left and now D’Antoni has finally let his emotions out.