The Los Angeles Lakers Need To Start Feeding Dwight Howard
posted Mar 03 2013, 10:04PM
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posted in NBA, Analysis

When Dwight Howard first came to the Lakers many people expected an instant championship. Analysts and so called experts around the nation were deeming the Lakers one of the élite teams in the NBA, and a team to be reckoned with. Now, more than halfway through the season, Laker fans and players are just hoping that they can reach the playoffs. But, one of the key ways for the Lakers to make a late season push, and contend for a bottom of the conferencee playoff seed, is an obvious but forgotten method... 

Start giving Dwight Howard the touches he has cried for all season. Yes at times Howard  can be utterly frustrating, as he has been at the beginning of the Hawks vs. Lakers game beginning 0-2, but he can also be amazing. When Howard is given the touches he wants, he is happy, when Howard is happy he tries harder on defense and it makes the Lakers a better all around team. If there is one area though where Dwight and the Lakers differ it is on how many touches Howard should get.  

When he came to L.A I don't think that Howard realized that he was no longer going to be in Orlando, and that the offense would not be centered around him anymore. While in Orlando the Magic played inside out, and with a deathly array of sharp shooters they were allowed that option, the Lakers are not. Although the Lakers do have a number of suitable outside shooters, Steve Nash, Kobe Bryant, Jodie Meeks, and Antawn Jamison come to mind, they do not have the high percentage guys the Magic once did. 

The area of 10-15 shots a night would be acceptable for Howard, and allow him ample time to get a feel for the post, the Lakers have not been satisfying that quota. In a win against the Minnesota Timberwolves Howard was only able to get off 6 shots and scored 11, against the Nuggets he was allotted 8 shots and scored 15, and against the Mavericks he was only allowed 7 shots and scored 9 points. 

Now while the offensive output does not clearly represent the true impact of Howard, as that is usually seen on the defensive end, these are not the numbers NBA fans are used to seeing from Howard. Granted he is still battling through injuries,and I don't know how much time he wants fans to give him to come back healthy but apparently he needs more, and that does indeed play a huge factor in his offensive performance. But in the short stints where Howard has been somewhat healthy, the Lakers have not seen that explosiveness and dominance they were hoping for. 

Ultimately the Lakers future rests in Howards hands, not Kobes. The Lakers are going to be built around Howard, and geared towards the future. If Howard wants his touches, whether it be 15, 20, or 30, for the sake of the Lakers franchise, they better give them to him. Because at the end of the day, the ball rests in Howards court, and he's already shown he has no problem breaking fans' hearts, as long as he gets what he wants.


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