Mar 8, 2013; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Toronto Raptors center Jonas Valanciunas (17) loses the ball to Los Angeles Lakers point guard Steve Nash (10) while defended by center Dwight Howard (middle) during the game at the Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Richard Mackson-USA TODAY Sports

Dwight Howard - has he decided, finally?

Dwight Howard reminds me of Hamlet, who also couldn’t make up his mind, except that Hamlet was fictitious and Dwight is all too real. The latest word from the notorious procrastinator is that he has decided which team will be lucky enough to sign him as their centre – but he won’t announce the winner until this weekend, earliest. Shades of LeBron James and The Decision of a few seasons back…this time, it’s the “Dwight-mare”!

Jan 28, 2013; Toronto, ON, Canada; Golden State Warriors center Andrew Bogut (12) tracks down the ball against the Toronto Raptors at the Air Canada Centre. The Warriors beat the Raptors 114-102. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

Why is this relevant to Toronto Raptors fans (after all, he’s not coming here)? Here’s the answer: whichever team he deigns to play for is going to have to make some fast decisions of their own about which players on their current roster they need to dump, in order to accommodate Dwight’s massive salary under the Collective Bargaining Agreement. The impact on General Managers all around the NBA will be huge, and will impact the entire free agent market. Expiring contracts will be even more in vogue than they currently are, and multi-player, multi-team trades will occur. Here’s a quick for-instance: the Golden State Warriors, who are suddenly an object of Dwight’s affection, have made it clear they will dump quality talent like Andrew Bogut (and massive disappointment Andris Biedrins, along with Richard Jefferson, who’s over the hill – good luck with those two…can you say amnesty?) onto the trade market. And another: the Lakers have changed their tune, and now say they will consider a Howard sign-&-trade. Better than getting bupkis, right guys? I confess I would love to see the Purple & Gold humbled for once.

Raps GM Masai Ujiri is in decent shape to pounce on interesting opportunities when (not if) they arise following Howard’s decision. We can endure some salary cap pain this season, as contracts on roster ballast like Linas Kleiza, Quentin Richardson, Marcus Camby and Aaron Gray all expire.

Expect the unexpected, Rapture Nation, from the moment Dwight lets the rest of the world in on his secret. We’ll keep you posted.

Brian Boake is Senior Editor for Raptors Rapture. “Like” Raptors Rapture on Facebook and follow us on Twitter @RaptorsRapture for all the latest news and updates about the best damn NBA team from Canada.



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Tags: Dwight Howard Dwightmare Los Angeles Lakers Masai Ujiri Toronto Raptors

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