When asked about the Hawks possibly signing Shaq to match up with the Magic, Dwight Howard had this to say to the Atlanta Journal Constitution…
“That’s only four games out of the season. You have to look long term and what’s best for your team. Cleveland got Shaq to match up with the Magic. They also got Antawn Jamison to match up with the Magic. But they didn’t even play the Magic. They played Boston [and lost]. You match up for the league, not just one team.”
The Cavs were eliminated by the Magic in the playoffs the year before, so it’s understandable why they would want to improve their roster with a possible rematch in mind. The Celtics looked like they were getting old very quickly, so they weren’t deemed the threat that the Magic were. That was obviously a big mistake.
I’m interested to find out why the Cavs weren’t able to acquire Amare Stoudemire. He was available for almost two years during the span when the Cavs were retooling their roster and would have seemingly been a very nice fit in the pick-and-roll with LeBron. Hopefully someday Danny Ferry will speak out on the subject because his word is about the only one I trust in this whole mess.