Dwight Howard: Just another game vs. Lakers

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To Dwight Howard, the questions about things unrelated to post-moves and blocked shots, rebounds and outlet passes never seem to end. For his final two years in Orlando, the questions were about extending his contract with the Magic, his relationship with his coach or his impending free agency. Then it was on to Los Angeles, where the free agency questions continued because he still did not have a long-term contract signed.

He was there just one season with the Lakers, but that year was spent on the mythical psychiatrist's couch, answering questions about his relationship with head coach Mike D'Antoni, who was the third Lakers coach last year. Then on to questions about how he and superstar guard Kobe Bryant got along.

Guess what came with him to Houston this past week? The same questions all over again as the first the Rockets were in Los Angeles on Monday to play the Clippers, not even the Los Angeles Lakers. Now, the Lakers are in town for Thursday night's first of four meetings between his current and most recent former team.

He was peppered with questions like "Is this game meaningful at all to you, because it's your former team?" and "So do you care that it's the Lakers?" and "What's it going to be like to face your former teammates?"

Howard politely answered them all, again. "Our team is on a mission. We can't concern ourselves with one game," Howard said. "We're trying to accomplish something big. (We) can't be too high or too low in any game. We've got to stay even-keeled and try to go out there and win.

"I just want to win. Just go out there and play, it's just another game, just go out there and play, have fun and get another win"

When asked (again) about his relationship with Bryant, since former teammate Antawn Jamison recently said the two just simply did not get along, Howard said, "There's no need to talk about it. I know you guys have a job to do and I respect that. I respect what you guys do."

"But I don't think there's any need for me to continue to talk about the Lakers and what happened," Howard said. "I've done enough talking about it. If it's about Houston and what we're trying to accomplish, then great. But every discussion doesn't need to about the Lakers"

He almost smiled once when asked how often he thinks about his time in Los Angeles.

He paused and responded sarcastically, "Every day, all the time, every day," he said.

- Adam Wexler, CSN Houston

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