Hawks Sign Eight-Time NBA All-Star Dwight Howard
Three-time NBA Defensive Player of the Year returns to hometown
ATLANTA -- The Atlanta Hawks Basketball Club has signed free agent center Dwight Howard, it was announced today by President of Basketball Operations/Head Coach Mike Budenholzer. Per team policy, terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
"We would like to welcome Dwight, and his family, home to Atlanta and into our Hawks basketball family. We feel Dwight will have a huge impact on both ends of the court with his physical presence and the force he brings to the game,” Budenholzer said. “We also look forward to his impact in our community as we all look to take Atlanta to another level on the court and off. We feel very fortunate to add a player of Dwight’s caliber and we look forward to assimilating Dwight into our team.”
An eight-time NBA All-Star, Howard owns career averages of 17.8 points, 12.7 rebounds, 2.1 blocks, 1.5 assists and 1.0 steals in 35.3 minutes (.582 FG%) in 880 regular season games (879 starts) with the Orlando Magic, Los Angeles Lakers and Houston Rockets, averaging a double-double in each of his 12 seasons and recording 613 double-doubles in his career.
“I am humbled and honored to be an Atlanta Hawk and to represent our city. This opportunity is a dream come true and a blessing for me and my family,” Howard said. “I look forward to pouring my heart out every night for this city, my teammates and the fans.”
The Atlanta native was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year in three consecutive seasons from 2008-09 through 2010-11, and is a five-time All-NBA First Team selection, as well as being named Second Team once and Third Team twice. He has been an NBA All-Defensive First Team pick on four occasions and Second Team once, and was a unanimous selection to the league’s All-Rookie First Team. Howard was the starting center for Team USA, which won the gold medal at the 2008 Beijing Olympics.
Howard, 30, ranks fifth in NBA history in field goal percentage, 13th in rebounds per game, 20th in blocks per game, 21st in blocked shots (1,824) and 27th in total rebounds (11,149). The single-season NBA leader in total rebounds six times, he has also paced the league in rebounds per games on five occasions, games played four times, blocks (total and per game) twice and field goal percentage once.
A veteran of 89 career postseason contests, Howard helped lead the Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals. He has career averages of 19.1 points, 14.1 rebounds, 2.6 blocks and 1.4 assists in 37.7 minutes (.589 FG%) in the playoffs.
A product of Southwest Atlanta Christian Academy, Howard was the first overall pick in the 2004 NBA Draft as an early-entry candidate.