— First Take (@FirstTake) September 17, 2020
“Remember Dwight Howard was the man in Orlando just like Paul George was the man in Indiana,” Smith said. “He wanted to leave. He goes to L.A. He ends up going to Houston, and then before long he’s a journeyman…because the star that he once was he was no more.”
NBA Twitter erupted, calling out Smith for his ill-advised comparison.
— Carrington (@Carrington_901) September 17, 2020
I mean… most players hope to be Dwight Howard.
5 time 1st team All-NBA
Also, Howard has been to an NBA Finals.
So… Maybe that's a good thing for George to set a goal for. https://t.co/YkVrGrBWrn
Extremely disrespectful to Dwight https://t.co/xwDnb7SBzl
— Trill Withers (@TylerIAm) September 17, 2020
Even Howard’s current Lakers teammate Kyle Kuzma called Smith out for his words.
He went to the finals. And 3peated defense player of the year nobody just doing that anymore lol https://t.co/ng7Jl0hKYS
— kuz (@kylekuzma) September 18, 2020
Howard has had a far more successful career compared to that of George in terms of accolades.
The big man has more All-Star appearances (eight) than George (six). In addition, Howard has been selected to five All-Defensive teams and George has been selected to just four.
In terms of All-NBA selections, Howard has eight on his resume to George’s five. That’s not even mentioning the fact that Howard was the league’s Defensive Player of the Year three times.
Howard’s stardom was ended by injuries, but he has found a valuable role this season with the Lakers. He averaged 7.5 points and 7.3 rebounds per game in a bench role during the regular season.
George, on the other hand, turned in a horrific 4-for-16 shooting performance in Game 7 of the second round of the playoffs. His Clippers blew a 3-1 series lead to the Denver Nuggets and have been eliminated from playoff contention.
It seems that Smith missed the mark on this one.