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Dwight Howard Chooses Houston Rockets for Faith, Team Chemistry and Championship

( [email protected] ) Jul 14, 2013 05:34 AM EDT
Dwight Howard was in Aspen, Colorado, where he prayed to God for a sign on what he should do, prior to making his decision on which team to sign with. Howard admitted that is his conversations with new teammate Chandler Parsons probably the most important elements that caught him were Houston’s great team chemistry and the feeling of family.
Newly signed Houston Rockets player Dwight Howard holds up his new team jersey during a news conference in Houston, Texas July 13, 2013. REUTERS/Richard Carson

Faith and trust among teammates are quintessential to the teams in a highly competitive environment, even more so for those that is trying to win championships.

“It takes a lot to win a championship,” said the former Los Angeles Laker’s center, the AP reported. “It doesn’t just happen when guys come together.”

Seven-time NBA All-Star Dwight Howard, 27, told the press at his introduction by the Houston Rockets at the Toyota Center on Saturday, “If you can’t be happy when you’re playing, it’s not fun. I want to get back to being that guy who was playing and having fun but at the same time dominating.”

Howard was presented the jersey with number 12. He was asked by the press about his thoughts about winning the championship this year.

“If we dedicated ourselves and sacrifice everything we’ve got for a championship, at the end of the season we should be holding up a trophy,” he said, according to AP.

Howard admitted that his new teammate Chandler Parsons made the biggest impact in his decision to sign with Rockets. In their conversations, he said probably the most important elements that caught him were Houston’s great team chemistry and the feeling of family.

Prior to making his decision on which team to sign with, Howard was in Aspen, Colorado, where he prayed to God for a sign on what he should do.

“I believe in signs … and when I was in Aspen it seemed like everybody I met was from Houston,” he said, according to AP. “I just had a good feeling in my soul about everything, the direction of the team, and just had a great feeling about what they were trying to accomplish.”

While playing for Lakers last season, Howard has voiced his frustration over the lack of chemistry and respectful relationships among the team players. He has said that winning is more than just getting the championship but winning in life is what counts.

“It means a lot to me just to have a fresh start and have an opportunity to write my own story,” Howard said, according to AP. “I don't think people understood the fact that I got traded to L.A., and now I had a chance to really choose my own destiny, and this is the place where I chose and I'm happy about it."

Howard took the stage and greeted owner Leslie Alexander and coach Kevin McHale. He was welcomed by a collection of former star centers for Houston, including Yao Ming, Elvin Hayes, Moses Malone and Ralph Sampson.

“Dwight is the biggest free agent acquisition in the history of the Rockets,” said owner Alexander, according to Reuters. “His addition puts us in contention.

“Fans are going to have a great time this year. This team will be tremendous fun to watch.”

Howard joined NBA in 2004 right after an outstanding high school career at Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy. He was selected first overall by the Orlando Magic. He later led the Orlando Magic to the three division titles and one conference title.

Before he was drafted in 2004, Howard said that he wanted to use his NBA career and Christian faith to “raise the name of God within the league and throughout the world.” In November 2009, he was named one of the 10 finalists for the Jefferson Awards for Public Service, which awards athletes for their charitable work.