Stop me if you've heard this one before: the Lakers and Magic are reportedly discussing a deal that would send Dwight Howard to Los Angeles. The news comes a few hours after free agency in the NBA officially began, which is always an insane time of year for teams all around the league.
The Lakers don't have a ton of cash to spend on free agents thanks to the new CBA, but they do have some potentially attractive trade pieces. Here is the latest from the always reliable Adrian Wojnarowski:
Orlando officials are willing to discuss trades for Howard, and the Lakers have been one of the teams in touch with them over the weekend, sources said. The Brooklyn Nets and Houston Rockets have also talked to Magic officials, sources said.
While the Lakers have yet to make a direct offer, there's no scenario where Orlando would move Howard to the Lakers without getting back Andrew Bynum, L.A.'s 24-year-old All-Star center. Pau Gasol wouldn't fit the Magic's desires to rebuild with young players and draft picks.
The Lakers had been willing to part with Bynum for Howard in March, but those talks ended when Howard decided to decline his early termination option and remain under contract through the 2012-13 season.
There's no denying that Howard is an incredibly talented (and still relatively young) player, but do the Lakers really need more drama on their roster? For all of the demands he has made in Orlando, what's to say he'll be a good teammate in Los Angeles? And is this all worth dealing Andrew Bynum, who is still developing and just 24 years old?
These are some tough questions, and ones the Lakers will have to face in the coming days as the trade rumors only begin to swirl even more.
For more on the Lakers and their pursuit of D12, check out Silver Screen Roll.