2. Dwight Howard
This sounds crazy considering Dwight Howard as a last-second desperation signing by the Los Angeles Lakers prior to last season. Howard did not even play in parts of the NBA Playoffs and was a bench player, but he is harder to replace than KCP?
Yes. Let me ask you this: how many true rim-protecting, rebound-swallowing centers are out there in the NBA for as cheap as Dwight Howard? Sure, DeMarcus Cousins is an option, but he has been battling various leg injuries and we have no idea what version of him the Lakers will get.
Yeah, the Lakers have JaVale McGee but McGee was really bad once the NBA resumed last season and is not a better option than Dwight Howard.
There are options such as Serge Ibaka, which is worth mentioning, but even he is worth far more than the veteran minimum that Howard is going to sign.
The answer? Not a lot. Not only are there not a lot of cheap options to replace Howard, but there are also very few players like Howard still in today’s game.
Howard averaged 14 rebounds and 2.2 blocks per 36 minutes last season. Only four players in the NBA averaged 14 rebounds and at least two blocks per 36 minutes: Howard (made $2.5 million), Rudy Gobert (made $24.2 million), Clint Capela (made $14.89 million) and Hassan Whiteside (made $27 million).
Tacko Fall also did but he only played 33 regular-season minutes. Does not count.