After years of speculation and a fired coach in both Orlando and Los Angeles, all it took was two tweets for Dwight Howard to make his long-awaited decision known to the public.
The seven-time All-Star would officially be signing a free agent deal with the Houston Rockets.
Howard’s first tweet was relatively formal:
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.”
Pretty classy. However, his second tweet came complete with the above photo. It is him alongside star Rockets swingman James Harden.
While there’s nothing wrong with this photo per se, I’m just a little surprised that the Rockets could not get their newly-minted franchise player onto something a little more official. After all, bringing Howard aboard is arguably the team’s biggest free agent signing, well, ever.
As for the historically dominant team that traded for him prior to the 2012-13 season, the Lakers released an official statement expressing disappointment in losing Howard to Houston.
“We have been informed of Dwight’s decision to not return to the Lakers. Naturally we’re disappointed. However, we will now move forward in a different direction with the future of the franchise and, as always, will do our best to build the best team possible, one our great Lakers fans will be proud to support. To Dwight, we thank him for his time and consideration, and for his efforts with us last season. We wish him the best of luck on the remainder of his NBA career.”
Following Dwight’s big announcement, his now-former Los Angeles teammate, Kobe Bryant, took to Instagram himself.
Bryant posted the below photo with himself and big man/best bud Pau Gasol. The two have won titles together and in spite of the fact that the Lakers’ front office seems to be continually putting Gasol on the trading block, he has been loyal to the franchise from the outset.
Included with the photo were the hashtags vamos, meaning “let’s go,” juntos which means “united,” and lakercorazon which is a phrase: “Heart of the Lakers.” Vino is one of the Black Mamba’s nicknames.