Dwight Howard will face the Orlando Magic Tuesday in Orlando for the first time since being traded to the Los Angeles Lakers this past Summer, and after the Lakers defeated the Chicago Bulls Sunday stated that he believes it will be a "very emotional" return, via Mark Medina of the L.A. Daily News:
"I’m pretty sure it’s going to be very emotional for me," Howard said. "Even just to talk about it just brings back a lot of emotion but we’ll see how it goes."
Howard was drafted by the Magic and began his first season in Orlando during the 2004-2005 NBA season. He spent the first eight seasons of his career in Orlando, but over the two prior seasons had been marred by what had been dubbed the "Dwightmare" as he and Orlando began pulling in opposite directions.
Kobe Bryant, however, didn't approve of Howard being "emotional" in returning back to Orlando and will have a few words with him beforehand, via Medina:
"Emotional? Man, I’ll talk to him," Bryant said. "Just go out there and bust your [behind] man. Show them what they missed in him. Save the emotional [stuff] for when you retire. Please."
The Lakers have won eight of their last ten games and are currently the eighth seed in the Western Conference playoff picture. The bottom of the Western Conference is still a tightly contested race, and the Lakers must continue winning the "must-win" games to stay ahead of the Utah Jazz, who own the tie-breaker between the two teams.
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