Orlando Magic General Manager Rob Hennigan says that Dwight Howard told him in a face-to-face meeting last week that he would like to be traded, and that his preference is to be dealt to the Brooklyn Nets.
Hennigan said Monday that Howard singling out one team complicates any potential trade scenarios, but he has not committed to honoring that demand and said he will keep communication lines open between both the All-Star and his agent.
However, it would appear that the Magic seem more determined than ever to trade Howard, after Hennigan refused to say whether or not he wanted to see the NBA superstar back in a Magic uniform next season.
"We want guys that want to be here, and we want guys that are about the things I explained earlier," he said. "We want guys that are about team. We want guys who are committed to something bigger than themselves, and we want guys who love the game."
Later, during a news conference, Hennigan was explicit that he hoped Jameer Nelson and JJ Redick would remain with the team.
The story gained legs over the weekend after Howard met with Hennigan for a Friday meeting in Los Angeles.
"Dwight did mention that his preference is to be traded. He did also mention that Brooklyn is where he would like to go," said Hennigan.
The team may or may not trade him to the Nets. Hennigan said Howard is drawing plenty of interest -- as a superstar should -- and repeated the mantra that he will do what is best for the Magic franchise.
"We're just going to analyze all options. We're going to analyze a full menu of whatever we have in front of us, and you know, if we need to make a decision, we'll make one."
The Magic also still have no coach, or certain timetable to get one. They also must decide this week on whether to pick up an option on Redick. Nelson is an unrestricted free agent, and forward Ryan Anderson is a restricted free agent, meaning the Magic could match any offer that comes in for his services.
Hennigan said Howard never claimed in the meeting in California that the Magic blackmailed him to give up an early termination clause in his current deal. Howard asked to be traded last season, then opted-in for 2012-2013 -- forgoing becoming a free agent this summer.
Hennigan said Howard is "progressing well" after back surgery.