By updating RealClearSports I read hundreds of articles every week but sometimes there are particular passages that need highlighting. And to make these passages more palatable I'm doing them in award form! The awards are completely random and will change weekly.
I've got a real sports dilemma right now. I was prepared to rip Dwight Howard (yet again) this week but now that he's headed to my beloved Lakers I don't know what to do. I can't wait to see him run the pick and roll with Steve Nash. I'm salivating over Russell Westbrook slashing through the lane and then getting the ball spiked back in his face from 'Superman'. I'm looking forward to watching Kobe and Metta World Peace gamble even more on defense knowing they have the best defender in the World behind them. But am I ready to forgive Howard for about a year of horrible decisions?
His latest mistake came when he decided to skip his own youth basketball camp in Orlando to stay in Los Angeles and continue his rehab. In hindsight, maybe Howard knew a deal was about to go down with the Lakers and that's why he made the decision. The reason though doesn't really matter. What does matter was it was another big PR hit that could've easily been avoided.
There were so many ways Howard could've turned this into an image-building event. Showing up despite his problems with the Magic could have showed he is above that drama and that he truly cares about the kids that shelled out big bucks to attend his camp. A full refund was offered when it was announced he would not be in attendance but that's of little consolation to the kids that have looked forward to meeting him for months and the parents that planned their lives around their kids being in camp for those days.
Howard could've also refunded everyone's money and maybe recruited some of his Magic teammates to attend. He could have given signed jerseys to each camper and done a Skype call. He could've offered tickets to any game for the following season. There were so many options that would have made him look better than deciding just to not show up and just offer a meaningless refund.
He likes to be the center of attention and clamors to be loved. How else do you explain him playing it up with the media with his impression of Kobe in his introduction as a Laker? Los Angeles is ready to embrace their newest big man. Many of them complained about Andrew Bynum's immaturity but is Howard really that much better in that regard? I will quickly fall in line and fall in love with the Dwight if he buys in to working hard and putting up the monster stats he is used to, but I'm not quite ready to give him the benefit of the doubt yet. On to the awards!
Continue to Column Awards of the Week (8/7-8/13)