The Dwight Howard saga, which took an unexpected twist and somewhat shocking turn on Friday night, has reached the end of the road.
Howard will play for the Houston Rockets next year.
The seven-time All-Star center tweeted: "I've decided to become a member of the Houston Rockets. I feel its the best place for me and I am excited about joining the Rockets and I'm looking forward to a great season. I want to thank the fans in Los Angeles and wish them the best."
Earlier in the evening, Howard told ESPN's Stephen A. Smith that indeed he had made his mind up and that he would sign a free-agent contract with Houston on Wednesday.
Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak confirmed on the team's website that Howard had informed him that he would not return to Los Angeles.
Earlier in the evening, ESPN reported that Howard had changed his mind and was not totally committed to signing with the Rockets.
Howard was in Los Angeles and had told the Lakers he was "50-50" on re-signing with them or the Rockets.
Howard was said to be having second thoughts about leaving $30 million on the table by signing with the Rockets.
"He changed his mind," the source said. "Hey, he's Dwight. What can you say.
"It's hard to walk away from $30 million. Harder than we thought."
Howard could have signed a $118 million, five-year deal with the Lakers. Other teams such as the Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks and Golden State Warriors could only off a four-year, $88 million deal.
Asked about the decision to leave the Lakers, Howard told Hoopsworld: "Very tough. Very, very, very tough. Very, very tough. People wouldn't understand. Walking away from them and walking away from $30 million. That shows you right there that I want to win. I want to win. Nothing else matters other than winning.
"I don't think anybody would've ever walked away from $30 million, but I want to win. But yeah, just walking away was tough. I was walking away from 6 million fans. I was walking away from a storied franchise. All of that makes it tough and it makes it a really, really big risk.
"But now, I'm doing what's best for Dwight. People are going to be mad and upset either way, so I'd rather be happy. I want to be happy playing basketball rather than upset doing what everyone wants me to do."
Earlier on Friday, Howard has told four of the five teams he was considering that they were no longer in the running and he would not be signing with them, according to ESPN.com. That left Houston as the winner of the Howard free-agent sweepstakes.
The highly coveted center told the Los Angeles Lakers that he would not be returning after just one season with the team, though the Lakers would not confirm they were out, ESPN reported.
Howard reportedly had been in Aspen, Colo., the past few days with his advisers discussing his options before returning to Los Angeles on Friday night.