Dwight Howard is moving quickly to disprove any doubt that his back will hold him back from missing the Lakers’ season opener. In fact with the way things are going Superman II could make his official Purple and Gold debut during the preseason.
Officially Howard took the court for the first time as a Laker today. DH participated in practice with his new team debuting to the surprise of many. Now he’s still not cleared for full contact yet and Mike Brown isn’t just ready to toss his new big man into 5-on-5s either.
Still this can be viewed as nothing but encouraging on all fronts.
Howard is quickly progressing towards being ready for the start of the season even if he’s still being held out for the first preseason game. That hasn’t changed.
What is changing around Lakertown is the offense as the Lake Show goes to Princeton. That’s another reason why Howard’s early showing in camp is even more vital. Getting a grip on a new system while learning new teammates is a challenge in itself, never mind the championship weight Howard is already carrying on his back.
According to Mark Medina’s account of what went on at practice today Kobe Bryant took Howard aside after practice to show him some moves in the paint. Coach Kobe isn’t messing around. He’s serious about getting another title ASAP and he’s also serious about wanting to pass the keys to Jerry Buss’ ride off to Howard when it’s all said and done.
Getting into practice today was downright necessary for Howard. If he could walk he had to be there. That being said, the way he pushing to get ready for the start of the season is impressive. Superman II gets respect but it’s still early and there is much to prove. So far he is showing the drive of a champion though.