Los Angeles Lakers All-star center Dwight Howard may be showing signs of maturing this season. He has fired his manager of nine years, Kevin Samples. Samples, who was originally living with Howard after he was drafted by the Orlando Magic, served as a big brother figure of sorts but is now no longer working with the superstar.
Samples’ firing definitely can be seen as a sign of growth for Howard. He has spoken frequently in recent months about focusing more and becoming goal-oriented. Howard spoke candidly to Kevin Ding of the OC Register when asked about the firing.
“We had nine great years together,” Howard told Ding late Monday night. “Just time to go separate ways.”
Could this actually be the year Howard ditches the happy-go-lucky act and becomes the super-competitive star of the Lakers’ future? The truth probably lies somewhere in the middle. While a full-fledged transformation for the big man isn’t likely, a slight change in attitude to go along with a back that is now healthier than ever could go a long way in determining how far this team and Howard go in the future.
“I know what I want to accomplish,” Howard said. “I’ve always written down my goals and everything I want, and I want to make sure I get ‘em.
“Everything I’ve lost, everything that’s gone away, I’m going to get it back,” he added.
With Samples gone, Howard now becomes, in a sense, his own man and will look to make more important decisions for himself going forward. It could bode well for both he and the Lakers in the near future.
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