NBA Rumors: Latest on Dwight Howard, Greg Oden and More Hardwood Buzz

Mike HoagCorrespondent IIFebruary 12, 2013

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 27:  Dwight Howard #12 of the Los Angeles Lakers leaves the court with four fouls in front of Pau Gasol #16 and Steve Nash #10 of the Los Angeles Lakers during the game against the Oklahoma City Thunder at Staples Center on January 27, 2013 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images)
Harry How/Getty Images

There aren’t just trade rumors buzzing around as the Feb. 21 NBA trade deadline approaches. Rumors about Dwight Howard’s future in Los Angeles and Greg Oden’s potential landing spots have begun to surface as that deadline draws closer.

The Miami Heat have apparently changed course on their interest in Greg Oden. With the Heat out of it, who is still in the running?

In the desert there are rumblings about a trade deadline coup by the Phoenix Suns, who are investigating multiple options in order to revamp their struggling roster.

Dwight Howard may go down as one of the dominating big men to play in the NBA, but he’s not making any friends in the process. His long and drawn-out contract drama in Orlando and now his drama-filled stint in Los Angeles are shaping the way his legacy will have us remember him.

Take a look at some new and interesting rumors from around the league.


Who is in on free agent Greg Oden?

FOX Sports’ Sam Amico reported (via Twitter) on Feb. 11 that the Miami Heat had dropped out of the running to obtain injury-riddled free-agent center Greg Oden.

Oden was drafted No. 1 overall in 2007 but played in just 82 games with the Portland Trail Blazers, his last appearance coming in 2009.

The two teams Amico listed, Cleveland and Charlotte, have both reportedly been rumored to be interested since the center announced he would attempt a comeback aimed at the 2013-14 NBA season. San Antonio, New Orleans, Indiana and Dallas have also been rumored to be monitoring his rehab and are in the running for his services.


Where Will Dwight Howard Play in 2013-14?

Dwight Howard will be a free agent following the 2012-13 seasons, and it’s still anyone’s guess where the dramatic big man winds up next season. He apparently has “little interest” in playing in Atlanta next season, according to ESPN’s Chris Broussard. If that’s true, then the possibility of Josh Smith leaving likely becomes even greater from there.

Recent drama in Los Angeles, including a rift with point guard Steve Nash and unfavorable comments from Howard's father, has further put Howard’s future in question.

Los Angeles GM Mitch Kupchak recently said the team would not trade Howard, but that doesn’t mean he will be back next season. That’s especially true if the team struggles and fails to make the playoffs this year.


The Phoenix Suns are Exploring Multiple Options

Phoenix has reportedly expressed interest in New York Knicks guard Iman Shumpert. It also has allegedly inquired with the Utaz Jazz about obtaining big man Al Jefferson or wing Gordon Hayward, according to Paul Coro of The Arizona Republic:

Dudley could be a part of either of those deals with center Marcin Gortat likely needed to make one work for Jefferson, a 28-year-old power forward who makes $14 million and is averaging 17.4 points and 9.5 rebounds. Hayward, a 22-year-old swingman, is averaging 13.5 points in a reserve role.

Moves are to be expected for a struggling team like the Suns. They certainly have some talent on their roster. Looking to add more isn’t too surprising for a team that has missed the playoffs every season since a first-round exit was handed to them by the San Antonio Spurs in 2008.