The No. 1 pick in the 2004 draft was one of the NBA's most popular and likable players, a wide-smiling, fun-loving big guy who led the Magic to the 2009 NBA Finals — where they lost to Bryant and the Lakers.
But he decided a couple of years later that he wanted out of Orlando, and the Magic eventually gave his agent permission to negotiate with the Nets, Mavericks and Lakers about arranging a trade.
Yet Howard would later agree to not opt for free agency, remaining with the Magic for the 2011-12 season. Howard's season ended prematurely when he needed back surgery, and Orlando finally dealt him to Los Angeles.
The Lakers' season was a disappointment, with Bryant, Gasol and Steve Nash all missing time with injuries. They never developed any chemistry, getting swept in the first round of the playoffs by San Antonio.
The Rockets believe he'll find that chemistry in Houston.
"We have good teammates. They're young. They're guys who are great not only on the floor but off. He's going to get along great with our team," Morey said in an interview with Comcast SportsNet Houston.