Is Dwight Howard eligible for the NBA Hall of Fame? Let’s take a look at Dwight’s resume and we will find out.
During Dwight’s prime in Orlando Magic, he was considered to be the best and most skilled center in the league. Well, there wasn’t much competition during that time. Shaquille O’Neal was already at the back end of his career, Yao Ming was constantly injured, and there were others who were borderline stars. Names that would come up to mind are Ben Wallace, Zydrunas Ilgauskas, Dikembe Mutombo, and Al Jefferson.
In his Magic days (2004-2012), he became:
|3x Defensive Player of the Year|
|5 All-Defensive Team Selections|
|7 All-NBA Team Selections|
|6x All-Star Selections|
|NBA All-Rookie 1st Team|
|Slam Dunk Champion|
|Went to the NBA Finals (0-4 against L.A. Lakers)|
DWIGHT’S OFFENSIVE AND DEFENSIVE PROWESS
Aside from being extremely athletic, Dwight is also very skilled with his footwork. He can shake off defenders easily with his post-up moves. He finessed the low hook shot, that he uses very often after a spin, which is very effective. He’ll back you down in the post, and put you in a poster.
His defense was also the best in the league during his prime. By this time, Howard is already top 10 all-time in rebounding, and top 13 all-time in blocks. He was a rebounding leader 5 times and was a blocks leader twice.
DWIGHT’S GREATEST WEAKNESS
Similar to other star centers, such as Shaq, his greatest weakness is the free-throw line. Both Dwight and Shaq share the struggle in sinking a free throw, even if they put their lives on the line. He was also not known to shoot jumpers from more than 15 feet, which allows the opponent to read him as a “limited to the painted area only” type of guy.
THE FAILED LAKER’S SUPER TEAM PROJECT
In 2012, we saw a super team forged in Los Angeles. Dwight Howard teaming up with Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, and the new addition star point guard, Steve Nash. We all knew what happened.
The team looked excellent on paper, but nowhere near that in reality. The chemistry wasn’t there. Dwight had a feud with Kobe. Steve Nash was already aging and suffering from back problems. His first stint with the Purple and Gold didn’t end that well
HOWARD AND HARDEN DUO IN HOUSTON
In the 2013-2014 season, after the failed run in L.A., Dwight was traded to the Houston Rockets. Paired with another superstar in James Harden, but it still didn’t pan out. He stayed only for three years with the Rockets, and then they called it quits.
He bounced around the league, from team to team.
Soon, he became irrelevant. Traditional bigs are going extinct. They aren’t the trend anymore. The NBA is getting new generational talents, new types of players. They call them “stretch centers” – guys who can shoot from outside the painted area. He is now getting older and older, and he probably realized he is now only a role player.
It wasn’t until he got a call from the Lakers in 2019, now led by LeBron James, that he is once again on a contender. This is now his 2nd stint with the team. Long story short, they won the 2020 Championships and Dwight has finally got his elusive ring.
Just by looking at Dwight’s earlier years, you can already judge he is a Hall of Famer.
No question about that. Even Ben Wallace got in the hall of fame (2021), and no disrespect to Big Ben, but Dwight has a much more impressive resume. It would be unfair if Dwight wouldn’t make it. So, he is for sure a future hall of Famer.
Is Dwight going to win another championship with the Lakers? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comments below. For more content, stay with us, here at Spiel Times.
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