There are plenty of good seats available on the Dwight Howard-to-Brooklyn train, but that deal might not be leaving the station without a significant nudge from a third team now that the Cleveland Cavaliers are backing out of discussions.
The Orlando Magic and Brooklyn Nets continue to discuss trade scenarios but matters grew more complex Tuesday when the Cavaliers, as first reported by Yahoo Sports, backed out of the deal. That development left the two teams to reconfigure a deal palatable to all sides while luring potential replacement teams into discussions to replace the Cavaliers.
The breakdown isn't a death knell for the deal, but it did prompt the Magic to resume talks with other teams, according to ESPN SportsCenter reports.
The Cavaliers were a key spoke in the Howard trade hub. Cleveland has the salary cap maneuverability to absorb sign-and-trade contracts others might not and in the now-dead proposal would have received from the Nets forward Kris Humphries, guard Sundiata Gaines and a future first-round pick. The Magic would have dealt small forward Quentin Richardson to Cleveland.
ESPN's Ric Bucher reported the Charlotte Bobcats could be drawn in as the third team in the deal. The Bobcats have even more cap space than Cleveland. The Clippers remain in the mix as a possible landing spot for Nets' guard MarShon Brooks. The Clippers would trade a future first-rounder to the Magic.
Humphries wasn't agreeable to a one-year guaranteed deal despite pleas from his representatives. His agent, Dan Fegan, also represents Howard.