Among a long list of names thrown around as potential suitors for the final roster spot, the Golden State Warriors have most recently and substantially linked with future hall of famer Dwight Howard. After spending all of last season playing in Taiwan, it seems as if the 37-year-old is ready to make his NBA return.
I’ve long been a supporter of the Warriors signing Howard for years. He has slowly grown into the perfect role player at the center position since his stint with the Charlotte Hornets where it became clear he was no longer a star.
The veteran players have even given their stamp of approval on the idea of playing with the former Defensive Player of the Year according to recent reports from Kron 4 News’ Jason Dumas.
After a few rough years battling injuries, his last three seasons with the Los Angeles Lakers and Philadelphia 76ers showed that he can be a strong supporting player on a championship caliber team.
In those three seasons Howard averaged 6.9 points, 7.3 rebounds, 0.9 blocks, and 0.7 assists per game while shooting 64.3 percent from the floor. He only played 17.5 minutes per game in that stretch but he had incredible single game stat lines where he was even recording steals and assists, proving that he can fit into a different role than once used to.
He may not be the player he was 15 years ago, but Howard can still provide excellent post defense and provide pressure from the dunkers position in the half-court.
How well would Dwight Howard fit with the current Golden State Warriors roster?
Howard would fit in almost seamlessly with the elite playmaking of Draymond Green, Chris Paul, and Stephen Curry. The gravity generated by the latter and Klay Thompson would definitely help him fit in as well.
This is the same team that saw JaVale McGee transform from Shaqtin’ a Fool MVP to the three-time NBA champion and Olympic gold medalist that he is today. It’s easy to envisage Dwight Howard excelling in the same role McGee had with Golden State.
Putting him in that 10–15 minute spot off the bench behind Kevon Looney seems like the perfect role for the soon-to-be 38-year-old, with Howard’s rebounding and interior defense potentially proving pivotal on a roster that currently lacks those elements.
This would also allow Green to play less minutes at the center position, something that is integral to keeping his health intact as he enters the later stages of his career. The minutes not taken by Looney and Howard could be taken by a combination of Dario Saric and Jonathan Kuminga.
If the Golden State Warriors sign Dwight Howard, they could be back in the championship conversation next season. His experience and size mixed with his broadened skill set would be incredibly valuable to this team.