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Sunday, Aug. 12, 2012

Howard joins Lakers in 12-player deal

AP

LONDON — At long last, Dwight Howard got what he wanted.

So did the Orlando Magic. A new beginning for both awaits.

It took four teams, 11 other players, five draft picks and countless rounds of talks over many months, but finally, the Magic decided the time was right to start over without the NBA's best center and end a saga that has dogged the franchise for what seems like an eternity.

Howard is off to play alongside Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles, after a megadeal was worked out Thursday and completed Friday after the NBA reviewed and approved the particulars.

"It was just a very tough situation for everybody to let go," Howard said. "I'm finally glad that it's over with. Myself and the Magic organization, we can all start over and begin a new career. Today is a fresh new start for all of us."

As far as the other headliners involved, Andrew Bynum leaves the Lakers for Philadelphia and Andre Iguodala is heading to Denver.

"Are we taking a step back? Absolutely, we are," Magic general manager Rob Hennigan said. "But we're taking a step back with a vision."



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