Free agent Howard confirmed his decision via Twitter with a picture of himself in a Rockets uniform and the following statement: “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.”
Howard’s four year deal is reportedly worth $88 million and offers him the opportunity to pair with James Harden, boosting the Rockets’ championship chances.
Howard joined the Lakers last August but the season — and his game with teammate Kobe Bryant — didn’t turn out as planned. The Lakers were ultimately swept by the San Antonio Spurs in the first round of the playoffs.
Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak released a statement responding to Howard’s decision: “We have been informed of Dwight’s decision to not return to the Lakers. 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.”