The 'Dwightmare' has to come to end Thursday -- at least for now. That is because the NBA Trade Deadline looms at 3 p.m. ET. Will Howard stay with the Orlando Magic? Will the Magic tire of the whole mess, refuse to gamble that Howard will stay long-term, and trade him to the New Jersey Nets.
The future directions of two NBA franchises hang in the balance of Howard's seemingly ever-changing mind, and heart.
Two of the best basketball beat writers in the business came out with vastly different reports on the Howard situation early Thursday morning.
Marc Stein of ESPN reported that Howard had refused to waive his opt-out clause, meaning that he could become a free agent July 1 if the Magic roll the dice and decide to keep him for the remainder of the 2012 NBA season. Stein's report indicated that the Magic were all but certain to trade Howard to New Jersey on Thursday.
Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, however, reported that Howard had changed his mind yet again. Wojnarowski reported that late Wednesday night Howard gave an interview indicating he would sign paperwork waiving the opt-out clause.
"Man, listen, you know my heart, my soul and everything I have is in Orlando," Howard told RealGM. "I just can't leave it behind."
Wojnarowski wrote, aptly, that the situation has "disintegrated into complete chaos."
All we know for sure is that by 3 p.m. Thursday we will have an answer.