According to ESPN, the Magic front office believes that Howard is attempting to manipulate the situation in order to become a free-agent next year, and as a result, have told teams they will trade the three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year. Howard had previously asked the team for a trade prior to the 2011-12 season, but the Magic have been patient leading up to Thursday’s 3 p.m. trade deadline.
“Dwight's dreaming if he thinks Orlando won't trade him without a commitment,'' a source told ESPN. "He needs to make some small commitment to them. They're saying it can't be one way.'' The Magic are reportedly looking for Howard to at least commit to not opting out of his contract following this season, which would allow him to hit the open market. If they do not get a guarantee that Howard will play in a Magic jersey next season, however, they are likely to trade him.