Lakers begin meeting with free agent Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard began a meeting with 10 members of the Lakers and their affiliates on Tuesday afternoon at 2 p.m. in Beverly Hills.
(Mark J. Terrill / Associated Press)

The Lakers began their meeting with Dwight Howard at 2 p.m. Tuesday afternoon, becoming the fifth team to sit down with him in a two-day span.

About 10 members of the Lakers and their affiliates attended the meeting in Beverly Hills, including Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, General Manager Mitch Kupchak and Coach Mike D’Antoni.

Lakers executive Jim Buss was also there but not team governor Jeanie Buss, who nonetheless sent out a pro-Howard tweet earlier Tuesday, saying the “Lakers offer 1) best opportunities for your playing & post-playing career 2) have BEST fans 3) I’m here for you.”


An executive from Anschutz Entertainment Group was also at the meeting, along with a representative from Time Warner Cable, the Lakers’ broadcast partner.

Howard, 27, met with Houston on Sunday, Atlanta and Golden State on Monday and Dallas earlier Tuesday.

The Lakers can offer him $118 million over five years while the other four teams can offer $88 million over four years. Golden State is too far over the salary cap to sign Howard as a free agent and can acquire him only in a sign-and-trade with the Lakers, an unlikely prospect.

Howard can’t officially sign with anybody until July 10 but the speed with which he has scheduled these meetings suggests he’ll make up his mind before then.


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