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Dwight Howard Chooses Rockets (And NBA Twitter, Lakers Have Dwightmare) [UPDATED]

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LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 28: Dwight Howard #12 of the Los Angeles Lakers listens to the National Anthem before playing against the San Antonio Spurs in Game Four of the Western Conference Quarterfinals during the 2013 NBA Playoffs on April 28, 2013 at Staples Center 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. Mandatory Copyri | Getty

Dwight Howard has made his choice, possibly. It might be the Houston Rockets, maybe. Unless, of course, the Los Angeles Lakers are still in the running, which they might be.

In a typically dramatic day in the Dwightstakes, it was first reported by Sam Amick of USA Today that the 27-year-old center had chosen to sign with the Houston Rockets.


A short while after that initial report by Amick, Howard's agent spoke with Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports and indicated that his decision had not been finalized.

Although it remained unclear if Howard and the Rockets had reached an agreement on a deal, it was confirmed that the Dallas Mavericks were out of the running. As first reported by Marc Stein of ESPN, Howard's camp had informed the Mavs on Friday that they were out of contention.

The Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks had also heard they were not going to land the seven-time All-Star, per Dave McMenamin of ESPNLA.

The Lakers' ability to offer Howard a more lucrative contract was being weighed by Howard, as reported by Alex Kennedy of HOOPSWORLD.

Amid the tweets coming from all ends of the NBA Twitterspehere, Rockets general manager Daryl Morey shared his cautious optimism.

Whether or not a decision had been finalized, Morey seemed to have ample reason to be confident that Houston was the ultimate destination for Howard. Wojnarowski, Ken Berger of CBS and David Aldridge of also reported that Howard had decided on the Rockets, each citing unnamed sources.

Perhaps buoyed by the multiple reports that Howard would be wearing a Rockets uniform next season, one of his potential future teammates seemed more certain than Morey. Houston guard Patrick Beverley seemed convinced Howard was coming, quite excited about it and tweeted that he would be willing to surrender the No. 12.

Not long after Beverley's exuberant tweet, Mike Bresnahan of the Los Angeles Times shared flight plan that could have taken a few of the exclamation points out of Beverley's celebration. Related or not, Beverley would later delete his tweet.

Having arrived in Los Angeles, Howard told the Lakers that no decision had been made, according to the source of ESPN's Chris Broussard.

Not long after Broussard's tweet, the Lakers' official Twitter account revealed that Howard was 100% not returning to Los Angeles.

"We have been informed of Dwight's decision to not return to the Lakers," Lakers General Manager Mitch Kupchak said in a statement published at the team's website. "Naturally we're disappointed. However, we will now move forward in a different direction with the future of the franchise and, as always, will do our best to build the best team possible, one our great lakers fans will be proud to support. To Dwight, we thank him for his time and consideration, and for his efforts with us last season. We wish him the best of luck on the remainder of his NBA career."

A short while after the Lakers' statement, Howard issued his own via Twitter. As was widely remarked upon, his updated avatar featured an image of him wearing a Rockets uniform.

"I've decided to become a member of the Houston Rockets," Howard said in a brief statement issued via his Twitter account. "I feel its the best place for me and I am excited about joining the Rockets and I'm looking forward to a great season. I want to thank the fans in Los Angeles and wish them the best."

Given the attention paid to the courtship of Howard and his history of drama going back to Orlando, these latest reports sparked plenty of conversation on Twitter.

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