The Magic drafted Howard with the first overall selection in 2004 and cultivated him into being the best big man in the game. All-star records, All-NBA selections and a bevy of playoff wins followed for the franchise center.
The Magic rode Howard’s broad shoulders all the way to the NBA Finals in 2009 when the superstar center anchored the middle and four capable 3-point shooters stuck to the perimeter. Now, a Houston team with an incumbent star in Harden and several 3-point marksmen is hoping to recreate the same sort of Magic around Howard as Orlando had four years ago.
Parsons, ironically enough, helped recruit Howard from Los Angeles to Houston. Parsons, an Orlando native, grew up going to Magic games as a fan and he cheered on the team during the ’09 run to the NBA Finals. He sees no reason why Howard can’t do for the Rockets what he did for Orlando in 2009.
``Defensively, he gives us that confidence that our team has never really had to be able to be aggressive and get into passing lanes. He’s fit in great giving us that different look so that we can throw that ball down to him,’’ Parsons said. ``Adding him to our core group I thought we had a chance to be really good. I thought we could win immediately by adding him and he thought the same.’’
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