(CBS/AP) ORLANDO, Fla. - 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.
The new Magic GM says Howard never claimed in the meeting in California the Magic blackmailed him to give up the 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 says Howard is "progressing well" after back surgery.
CBSSports.com's Matt Moore says Howard is trying to prevent the Magic from trading him to a "rental" team like the Rockets.
"It's a full-court press to avoid a situation in which a team other than the one he wants gets his Bird rights," Moore says. "Howard wants the extra year and raise structure that comes with re-signing with the team that has his Bird rights."