By Billy Perlmutter

Last week the Houston Rockets acquired Thomas Robinson from the Kings in a six player deal,Robinson being the driving force of the deal. In order to get Robinson wearing a Rockets jersey Houston had to give up Toney Douglas, Cole Aldrich, and Patrick Peterson. The trade may not have been the blockbuster deal most fans were looking forward to seeing at the trade deadline, but it just might change the future of one NBA superstar.

Over the past summer during the whirlwind of trade rumors regarding All-Star center Dwight Howard, it seemed as if it all might be over, and Howard be sent to Houston. Eventually the deal fell through and Howard ended up getting shipped to Los Angeles where he and his Lakers are now struggling. Then just as the season was about to start, Rockets fan’s spirits were lifted when James Harden was traded to the team from former Western Conference Champs, the Oklahoma City Thunder. It was clear that this move was intended to give the Rockets a chance to bring the NBA Championship back to Houston in a few years, but talks about acquiring Dwight via free agency this summer continued as egos finally started to get bigger in Rockets front office. Yet now with the recent trade involving Thomas Robinson, it seems unlikely that Houston would go out and sign another big man which would give them three on their roster (Dwight, Robinson, and Omer Asik). So with Houston seeming to be out of the picture to land Dwight Howard this off season, what are some other likely landing spots for D12?

Dallas: Mavericks owner Mark Cuban has made Dallas a possible landing spots for big name free agents for the past few years; emphasis on the possible. Cuban who most recently went out and tried to get Lebron James and Deron Williams, has failed to grab a bigger name than O.J. Mayo most recently. The Mavericks cap situation however is ideal. With the dumping of Chris Kaman and Anthony Morrow’s contract alone, the Mavs could clear up $12 million. Mark Cuban has never been known to have a tight wallet, and will be very aggressive in the pursuit of Dwight Howard this summer.

Atlanta: With Josh Smith’s likely departure from the Hawks organization after this year Atlanta will have plenty of cap space to go out and sign a max contract.Yes Al Horford is in the front court but him and Josh Smith shared the ball, so it wouldn’t be the least bit surprising if him and Dwight can do it as well. With a couple of accusations via the draft, trade, or free agency, the Hawks could build a formidable supporting cast around Howard.

Los Angeles: If things with Kobe smooth out, and the Lakers figure out how to win with the cards they’ve been dealt, then it would make a lot of sense for Dwight to stay in the Purple and Gold. Dwight loves the city, he’s an aspiring movie star, and what better franchise to make cement your legacy in than the Los Angeles Lakers?

This year’s free agency period is going to be a frenzy. With the best big man on the block, who knows what could happen? Don’t be surprised if he decides to go somewhere that wasn’t named, or someplace unexpected. But one thing for sure is the name that’s going to be circulating the most this summer is Dwight Howard’s.

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