Dwight Howard won’t be traded (for now).

After seemingly countless days of heavy-duty trade rumors, as reported and/or created by the likes of Chris “my sources indicate that Lebron will sign with Chicago/New York/Miami/Brooklyn/Poland” Broussard, the Magic abruptly put an end to all talk by pulling him off the trade market on Wednesday. Apparently, nothing being offered in return was good enough, and Orlando is going to try and “work something out.”

A bunch of back-and-forth posturing and bickering (stop me if this sounds familiar), with the end result being god-knows-what. The team would love to keep him but has to know that it’s extremely unlikely (don’t they?). Dwight wants out, but makes indicative statements that seem to change every other day (“I love/hate this situation,” “I want to stay/leave here,” “I want to win/be on the beach”). The whole thing comes off as some 2011, pro sports, Sweet Valley High bullshit… and it won’t stop until someone finally steps up and pulls the proverbial trigger.

(Above: GM Otis Smith and Dwight Howard)

But there is good news…

… Hedo Turkoglu remains deeply entrenched in the murky abyss of Orlando’s roster.

The one constant that each Howard-rumor involved was the inclusion of Hedo and the remainder of his abomination of a contract. With approximately 3-years and $34 million left to pay, the Magic stood strong with their stance: Dwight is a possibility, but you are, without question, going to take this other motherfucker off our hands.

The mere thought of Turkoglu being traded to a team that would become an instant contender (NOT because of him, just to be absolutely clear) had me wildly throwing objects out the window and towards the dumpster three stories below (each toss exhibiting more accuracy than any Hedo Turkoglu pass ever). I cringed at the idea of Hedo going 1 for 8 from downtown in a banana-yellow Lakers jersey. The image of the Staples Center – with its dimmed lighting and the Lou Diamond Phillipses of the world looking on – playing regular host to the Turkish goof and his tactless/brainless/dickless brand of basketball was and still is legitimately upsetting.

(The only positive I could think of was Kobe getting fed up and publicly berating him on Christmas Day, but even that wouldn’t be worth suffering through the rest of the year for)

Or how about HEDO IN BROOKLYN? Think of the stupid Jay Z-oriented photos. HOVA AND HEDO. It would look like this:

(Picture Jay Z next to him with some shades on or something)

Maybe it could be Turkoglu in the Windy City?! Just try to envision the contrast of Derrick Rose near the point of physical exhaustion on the court and Hedo near the point of mental exhaustion on the bench (as he tries to figure out, “… if I order the pizza from the bench, will they actually come down and give it to me? Or do I have to go up to the concourse and get it myself? Because I’m not even going to try ordering if I have to go get it…”).

The bottom line is that Dwight Howard needs to stay in Orlando because Hedo Turkoglu needs to stay in Orlando. That’s the easiest place for him to be forgotten about right now (it would have been even better if he just would have stayed up in Toronto or been one of those players to get trapped in China with a lockout-inspired contract, but those respective ships have both sailed).

– Wes Lilliman


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