The frenzy of trades ahead of the NBA Draft has begun.
The Hornets are sending decorated big man Dwight Howard to the Nets for Timofey Mozgov, ESPN.com reported Wednesday, saving the Nets $17 million and creating two spots on the roster for maximum-salary deals. Brooklyn also will send two future second-round picks and cash to Charlotte.
Deal includes Nets sending two future second-round picks and cash to Charlotte for Howard, who has a $23.8M expiring contract. https://t.co/v4sOImIHl2
— Adrian Wojnarowski (@wojespn) June 20, 2018
Howard, who started 81 games for Charlotte last season and averaged 16.6 points and 12.5 rebounds per game, will play for his fourth team in four seasons.
According to NBA analyst Brendan Haywood, the Hornets locker room won’t miss Howard.
“When I talk to people behind the scenes, the locker room hated Dwight Howard,” Haywood told SiriusXM. “I’m not sure Charlotte is rebuilding or if they’re just trying to get Dwight Howard out of there, but it was clear the locker room did not like Dwight Howard.”
Just one year after trading for Dwight Howard the #Hornets are shipping him out and @bwood_33 says it has nothing to do with his ability on the court. pic.twitter.com/aQ8GYqqNsy
— SiriusXM NBA Radio (@SiriusXMNBA) June 20, 2018
Mozgov is in a similar situation as he’s going to his fourth team in as many seasons. He played in only 31 games for Brooklyn last season and averaged 4.2 points and 3.2 rebounds per game.
Earlier this week he criticized the Nets for his lackluster campaign.
“I’m very dissatisfied with my NBA season. It was a hard one and really bad,” Mozgov said on his personal blog. “The breaking point came quite unexpectedly. The coach just said: ‘This is the situation we have.’ There were no transitional periods, just like this: bang!”
Mozgov’s agent, Stanislav Ryzhov, told the New York Post: “Yes, Mozgov is not satisfied, and Nets know about it. He is motivated to play and hates sitting on the bench. We are 100 percent sure that he is still a contributor.”
Mozgov, 31, slated to make $16 million next season as part of a four-year, $64 million deal he signed with the Lakers in 2016 when Mitch Kupchak, now the Hornets general manager, held the same title in Los Angeles.