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#pounditThursday, December 8, 2022

Stan Van Gundy has surprising admission about Dwight Howard

Dwight Howard in street clothes

Roughly a decade after they feuded in Orlando, Stan Van Gundy is making a surprising admission about Dwight Howard.

Van Gundy, the former NBA coach, spoke this week for a feature on Howard by Tania Ganguli of the New York Times and admitted that Howard should have made the NBA 75 team of the 75 greatest players in NBA history.

“Whatever the reason that he got left out, there’s something more than basketball to it,” said Van Gundy, who coached Howard at Howard’s best.

“I have people ask me like, ‘Oh, do you think he’s a Hall of Famer?’” Van Gundy added. “Do I think he’s a Hall of Famer? Are you kidding me? Go check and see how many people have done [what Howard has done].”

Ganguli’s feature contains extensive reporting from other former colleagues and teammates of Howard and is definitely worth reading in its entirety.

Van Gundy coached Howard on the Magic for five seasons, making the NBA Finals together in 2009. But the two’s relationship ended up souring as Van Gundy believed that Howard wanted him fired, leading to some pretty darn awkward moments between them. Van Gundy was eventually fired in 2012, and Howard got traded to the Los Angeles Lakers just a few months later. Despite their issues though, there were some signs in recent years that tensions between the two men had thawed.

But purely from a basketball standpoint, there is little doubt that Howard should have made the NBA 75 team. At his apex, Howard was undoubtedly the most dominant center in basketball, earning enough All-Star selections, All-NBA nods, and Defensive Player of the Year trophies to line an entire room. Given that players like Anthony Davis and Damian Lillard made the cut over Howard, the omission definitely had many scratching their heads.

For Howard’s part, he recently addressed the NBA 75 snub himself as well. The 36-year-old center explained why he believes he was left off the team.

H/T NBA Reddit

Photo: Jan 15, 2016; Houston, TX, USA; Houston Rockets center Dwight Howard (12) arrives at Toyota Center before a game against the Cleveland Cavaliers. Mandatory Credit: Troy Taormina-USA TODAY Sports


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