Stephen A. Smith Rips Dwight Howard’s Game, Denies Trade Rumors
"You just ain't that dude anymore," Stephen A. Smith said Wednesday as part of a greater attempt to inspire Dwight Howard to, ya know, be that dude again.
"At this point he comes across as a slightly above average player."
To Smith's estimation, Howard's mediocre play serves as evidence disproving Chris Sheridan's report that the Miami Heat should and will trade 26-year-old shot-blocking machine Hassan Whiteside to Houston for the hobbled 30-year-old.
Howard called Sheridan's report "lies" when asked about his future in a Rockets uniform Tuesday night.
[Houston Chronicle] “I haven’t said anything to anybody about anything,” Howard said. “People make up lies and rumors. That’s never been my focus. I’m trying to get these guys to play better and get myself to play better.
“People are going to say what they got to say to get a story out. People are always going to come up with some rumor and lies. That’s what it is. I can’t focus on that. And I don’t want my teammates to focus on that.”
While Smith's damning assessment of Howard's production and effort is entirely justified -- Dwight isn't an all-star anymore -- it's hard to look at the guy's notoriously fickle temperament and not wonder if he'd play harder/better outside the shadow of Adidas' $200 million Kardashian accessory, James Harden. And if injuries are part of the reason he's been sucking, so be it -- but a move to Miami could at least free Howard from his broken ego.
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