Dwight Howard to Lakers deal in place, pending NBA approval

Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard speaks with the media at a news conference after he was presented with the 2010-11 NBA defensive basketball player of the year award in Orlando, Fla., Monday, April 18, 2011. Howard, with his three awards, is the first player to win the award in three straight seasons.
AP Photo/John Raoux

(CBS/AP) Dwight Howard's departure from Orlando is nearly complete.

The All-Star center could be a member of the Los Angeles Lakers as soon as Friday, pending NBA approval of a four-team, eight-player trade also involving Denver and Philadelphia.

Ken Berger of CBSSports.com reported on Thursday night that the four sides had reached an "agreement in principle" on the deal, citing three league sources. Berger further reported that multiple sources urged "caution" because they had "not heard directly from Orlando management" that the Magic were in on the final deal and that "some pieces could continue moving in and out of the deal" prior to it going official. However, Berger reported, "the framework sending Howard to the Lakers is in place."

A person familiar with the details told the AP that a conference call has been set up Friday with team representatives and league officials.

Teams are required to get league approval once they have agreed upon the terms of a deal.

Multiple reports on Thursday said Howard would go to the Lakers, ending months of talks between the Magic and numerous in trying to grant his request to leave Orlando.

Philadelphia would get All-Star center Andrew Bynum from Los Angeles and Jason Richardson from Orlando, while Denver would get 76ers All-Star Andre Iguodala, playing for the U.S. men's basketball team Friday in the Olympics semifinals against Argentina.

Orlando would receive Arron Afflalo and Al Harrington from Denver, Nikola Vucevic and Moe Harkless from Philadelphia, and lottery protected first-round picks from each of the three teams.

Howard had asked for a trade to Brooklyn, but Orlando failed to work out a deal with the Nets, but was determined to move their disgruntled big man who told the Magic he wanted out even before the 2010-2011 season started.

Howard averaged 20.6 points and 14.5 rebounds in 54 regular-season games for Orlando last season. In eight seasons with the Magic, he averaged 18.4 points and 13.0 rebounds.