Los Angeles Lakers Rumors: WIll Dwight Howard Return Next Season? Mitch Kupchak Uncertain About His Future

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May 01, 2013 11:21 AM EDT
Dwight Howard
Los Angeles Lakers Dwight Howard (R) hugs Kobe Bryant after they defeated the Chicago Bulls during their NBA game in Los Angeles, March 10, 2013."

With Dwight Howard's future next season uncertain with the Los Angeles Lakers, GM Mitch Kupchak remains "hopeful" and "optimistic" that Howard will re-sign with the team.  Kupchak admitted that he and Howard had a long talk in his office and that he tried to sell Howard on the idea of returning to Hollywood.

Unfortunately, Kupchak remained unsure as to whether or not Howard would return:

Kupchak is playing the waiting game for Howard like the rest of the league, but Howard seemed more and unsure about what the future held for him in a recent interview:

However, despite the uncertainty Kupchak reiterated that Los Angeles is the right place for Howard and that the Lakers give him the best chance at winning a championship. Whether or not Howard believes so is entirely u to him.

Howard has refused to comment on his future with free agency looming, but according to Yahoo! Sports, the big fella touched on how much of a disappointment his first year in Hollywood was.

"It's like a nightmare," Howard said after Los Angeles suffered a 103-82 defeat that swept it out of Round 1 of the playoffs. "It's like a bad dream and we couldn't wake up out of it. That's what it felt like.

"It seemed like nothing could go right, right from the start, injuries and all that stuff. We get an opportunity to get some rest for guys who are injured. A chance to rehab and think about what we can all do to better ourselves."

Howard made his seventh All-Star appearance this season, but his 17.1 points per game were his lowest average since his second season in the league, his 12.4 rebounds were his lowest since his third season, and his 49.2 percent mark from the foul line represented the second straight season he's shot less than 50 percent from the charity stripe.

Once he becomes a free agent this offseason, Howard can sign a five-year, $118 million contract to stay with the Lakers, or a four-year, $87.6 million deal with another team.

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