Hello Magic Fans.
First of all, I'd like to say that I totally understand your frustration about possibly losing your franchise player. If I were in your situation I would probably feel similarly .
I'm not here to insult you as fans. I would just like to share my point of view on a couple of things that I have heard.
I've read / heard to some interesting comments on the Dwight Howard situation and wanted to comment on a few of them. These are a few of the comments;
1. "Dwight is not really interested in winning, he's just another selfish player who want's to play in a big market"
2. "The Magic are a winning organization, so the fact that he's requested to leave them for possibly the nets shows that he's not interested in winning.
3. "He should not follow Shaq, but follow the wonderful Tim Duncan and show loyalty to the franchise that drafted him"
1. I think that it's unfair to say that a player who chooses to switch teams is said to be a selfish player. In fact, Dwight's play over the years has been very selfless. He's always shown himself to be a team player. The year they made the finals, never did you hear him complaining about not getting enough shots. If the team won, he was happy. In fact, he has focused on improving his offensive game, mainly to improve the team's chances to win.
2. Why are the magic a winning organization? I would argue that they are a winning organization in large part because Dwight has been there. Would they have been as successful without him. I think not. High Caliber players make Winning organizations. The Spur are a Winning organization because of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker and Manu. The Lakers have been a Winning Organization because of Kobe, Pau, Bynum and Odom. The Thunder are a Winning Organization because of Durant and Westbrook. Likewise, the Magic have been a winning organization because of Dwight Howard, Nelson, Hedo, and Lewis (In large part to Dwight. If Dwight were to leave the Magic for the Nets, they would become a Winning Organization because of Dwight and Deron.
The fact that he wants to leave may have more to do with his feeling that he has given 7 years of his career to the team and perhaps he feels that they have peaked. Perhaps he feels that a new start with him and Deron as the foundation to a team would have more potential than his current situation.
3. Loyalty to a franchise. To me he has been loyal. He's improved every year that he's been in the league. He's been a team guy for all these years. He's given 100% as a player. No one can demand more. This is a business, the structure of this business gives players the right to choose where he wants to play after his contract is up as free agents. He is not a slave to the Orlando Magic organization. He does not belong to them. I find it a bit insulting to question a person's loyalty when he chooses to exercise his rights as a a free agent. Magic fans were not saying that Tracy McGrady was disloyal when in 2000 he signed as a free agent in a sign and trade deal. So why say that Dwight leaving the Magic is being disloyal? That's just ridiculous.
If at the end of the season Deron Williams chooses to play somewhere else, be it Dallas, Orlando, or LA, that's his right as a free agent. He's can't be labeled as disloyal just because he spurns the team I enjoy watching. Neither can the same be said of Dwight.