Blackballed Champion Shares Advice He Gave Dwight Howard Before NBA Bubble

Getty Dwight Howard of the Los Angeles Lakers.

Los Angeles Lakers big man, Dwight Howard has been vocal throughout his time in the bubble at Walt Disney World in Orlando, Florida.

Back in July, Howard revealed that he didn’t agree with mask wearing, that someone in the NBA bubble reported him to the league’s anonymous tip hotline and that he was an anti-vaxer.

The Orlando Magic’s first overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft, Howard, 34, is in his second stint with the Lakers. He signed with the Lakers via free agency last summer after a freak injury to DeMarcus Cousins made a roster spot available.

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Despite using Instagram Live to air out his concerns, Howard, an 8-time NBA All-Star and Olympic gold medalist, five-time NBA All-Defensive Team member and three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year has given clear insightful during his stay in the bubble.

“Let’s not forget why we’re here,” he said last month.

“We’re going to use our platform to discuss the things that we want to talk about, not the entertainment of masks and who’s not wearing it. But I do appreciate people wanting to know. But that is something that is still been on my mind. Despite us being here, what’s going on in our world around us. We’re not going to allow anything to distract us from the topics that needs to be discussed.”

Before the NBA bubble began, I learned that Howard consulted with NBA legend Craig Hodges.

“I feel like right now, those athletes who are in the bubble, especially like Dwight Howard, who was one of the ones who I was speaking to on a monthly or a weekly basis, I just talked to him about standing firm, man,” Hodges told Brian Mazique, Ben Doody and myself on the Heavy With Scoop B Show.

An NBA Champion with the Michael Jordan-led Chicago Bulls in the 90s, it is believed that Hodges was blackballed by the NBA after he handed a letter to former U.S. President George H.W. Bush during the Bulls’ championship visit to the White House. The contents of the letter, according to Hodges made President Bush aware of the mistreatment of poor people and people of color in the United States.

“We need someone down there who is standing firm,” said Hodges.

“Because all I hear down there is soundbites about Black Lives Matter. And then once again, this is determination of what Black means.”