Dwight Howard is “not stupid” and was not ejected last night from his impressive Rockets Debut
Dwight Howard wants you to know that he “is not stupid.” Kareem Abdul Jabbar appeared on ESPN’s First Take last week and said “Dwight’s basketball IQ is not up to speed for him to be a dominant player.” The comments by the LA Lakers legend seemed to have offended Dwight a little more than the usual criticism he receives.
“You can’t win three Defensive Player of the Year trophies and be stupid. That can’t be done,” he said, according to the Houston Chronicle. “And I don’t think any coach that has ever coached me has said I have a low IQ for basketball. Have I done some dumb stuff on the floor? Yes, every player has. Have I done some stupid things in life? Yes, it’s life. We make mistakes and learn from them. It is what it is. I think I am very intelligent when it comes to the game of basketball. I have been playing since I was 3 years old. Each year, I get a little smarter.”
Whether or not Dwight was any smarter last night in his Rockets debut than he was in his finals days in LA is unknown but the new Rocket center was impressive. Howard racked up 19 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and a block in 27 minutes of action. The most impressive stat is that he hit 7 of 11 from the free throw line after getting blasted by everybody for saying he wants to shoot 75-80% from the charity stripe this season (it’s still a safe bet he wont accomplish that goal).
Although Kareem might not be a member of the Dwight Howard fan club, Hakeem Olajuwon is and had some positive things to say about Dwight last night.
“What I saw from him tonight were many of the things that we have seen from Dwight earlier in his career. He was athletic. He was alive. But most of all, I think he looked like he is having a good time out there. He is happy and I can tell you from personal experience that means a lot. You need to know that your coach believes in you, that your teammates truly believe in you and that the city is behind you. I think after a couple of difficult seasons, Dwight has that again here in Houston.”
“I’m especially glad that Dwight got to play as many minutes as he did tonight. It will do him good to build up his legs and his endurance was soon as possible, so that when the regular season begins he will be ready to dominate.
As for those minutes Hakeem mentioned. There was some confusion last night to why Dwight played the minutes he did. In an age where everybody is so eager to break news and be the first to raise their hand and scream (tweet/blog/update/share) an answer, it doesn’t take long at all for a rumor or false information to spread through the internet and Dwight Howard’s “ejection” last night was an example. Dwight picked up a tech in the 3rd quarter that a few writers thought was his second of the game so they quickly hit the web with an update about “Dwight getting ejected in his Rockets Debut.” Once a few major website, blogs and users of Twitter saw the headline, they quickly reposted & retweeted it and the next thing you know, a bunch of webpages went down and corrections were made once they learned he was not ejected.