The Shootaround crew returns to give their quick takes on the Dwight Howard blockbuster.
The Age of Empire
As I slowly progress toward the end of my life, I find myself more and more impressed by the (seemingly limitless) tenacity of the Lakers franchise. They are the only team in the NBA who is continually like this; they are the only team who flat-out refuses to have an average, uninteresting roster. In 35 years, they've been under .500 just three times. They never rebuild. They always go for it. I'm not sure if Dwight Howard will ultimately prove to be a massive upgrade from Andrew Bynum (and I can even imagine a scenario where it makes things worse), but there's no way you can argue over the intention behind this move.
It feel weird saying this, but it's true: As it turns out, The Decision was great for the culture of the NBA. It shoved the idea of building a super-team directly in everyone's collective face, and now there's no other way to be ultra-competitive. If you want to run with Miami, you have to mortgage practicality and simply acquire three of the league's best 25 guys by any means necessary. There are now two incredible teams in the West and one and a half incredible teams in the East (until Derrick Rose plays again, Chicago is on the fence). The NBA has instantly evolved from a sport that wasn't even that interesting in February to a sport that is totally worth following in August. I suspect L.A. may still lose to Oklahoma City in the playoffs, but at least there's something to daydream about until that happens. I'm ecstatic this trade happened. — Chuck Klosterman