Dwight Howard and Kobe Bryant share a history which goes back to 2012. Bryant was LA Lakers' key player when they picked up Howard during a four-team trade. However, Howard departed to Houston Rockets via free agency after one season with the Lakers. NBA reports talked about the tension between the two while Howard was on the team. The situation escalated when Kobe allegedly called Howard 'soft' when they clashed at the Staples Center. In an interview with a sports channel earlier this year, Howard opened up about the confrontation that took place years ago.
Howard admitted that he somewhat hated Bryant for what he said. However, he added that he did so because he misinterpreted Bryant. He thinks that Bryant must have meant Howards' 'mentality' and not his physique. Howard stated that he misunderstood it because of the noise around him back then. He was a little ignorant back in 2012. He added that people mature at different levels, and he appreciates Bryant now. He thanked the older player and accepted that he did not understand what he meant until now.
Both Howard and Bryant shared a moment before the Lakers vs Hawks game on Sunday night. In a post-match interview, Howard said that there are no hard feelings between them as it happened a long time ago. He added that he was glad Bryant came to the game. Bryant slapped him on the back of the neck and told Howard he was playing good. Howard said that at first, he was not aware who it was, and was going to elbow the person.
The first player Bryant ran into on the court was Dwight Howard, and the two shared a hug. pic.twitter.com/fhGLEqtADd— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) November 18, 2019
Dwight Howard said when he saw Kobe pregame, he didn’t know who it was and almost elbowed him. He’s asked if there were bad feelings between him and Kobe. “Doesn’t matter. ... It’s a new age, new day. We’re all about positive vibes.”— Tania Ganguli (@taniaganguli) November 18, 2019