According to Lake Show Life’s Jason Reed, the Boston Celtics would’ve been better off signing Dwight Howard, a true center, over Wenyen Gabriel — who received a partially guaranteed deal from Brad Stevens and Co. –, who profiles as active, if undersized, in the paint.
“Instead of Wenyen Gabriel the Boston Celtics may have gotten more out of signing Dwight Howard,” Reed prefaced before saying, “It is crazy, we know, but Howard’s name has been in the NBA rumor mill in recent weeks and he still has something to offer to an NBA team.
“Gabriel is a fine option to do that but he is not a traditional center. He is undersized compared to a traditional NBA big (six-foot-nine) and isn’t necessarily a prominent rim protector or rebounder. Howard would have given Boston that traditional rim protection and rebounding center that the team doesn’t really have at the moment. As promising as Gabriel was in the World Cup, that isn’t the type of center that he is.”
Unclear if Dwight Howard can be conducive to Boston Celtics title hopes
Howard is an interesting case at this stage of his career. In his twilight, Howard is a positive presence with championship experience, but it has to be noted that the eight-time All-Star was long-known for being a locker room problem during his days with the Los Angeles Lakers (the first time), Houston Rockets, Atlanta Hawks, and Washington Wizards. It was a second run with the Lakers that revived his image and gave other teams the idea he could be a net-positive; though after his latest run in L.A. during the 2021-22 season, Howard, like fellow ring-chasing vet Carmelo Anthony, hasn’t gotten another NBA chance.
The Boston Celtics are about to enter a do-or-die season that could help determine what pieces will remain on the board for the long haul. With Jaylen Brown’s Supermax, Jayson Tatum’s impending Supermax, Kristaps Porzingis’s extension, and a likely Jrue Holiday extension. Howard is a great fit at the 5 behind Porzingis and Al Horford with Robert Williams III now with the Portland Trail Blazers post-Holiday trade, but is his big personality needed in a situation in which Tatum and Brown are expected to take a step forward in the leadership department?
He might, but that’s a chance the Celtics may not be able to take without a risk of damning repercussions.