Dwight Howard must be a serious pain in the ass.
Last night, Brooklyn forward Kevin Garnett, famed almost as much for the amount of trash he talks as his once-insane athleticism and skill, lost his cool while guarding Howard, chucking a basketball at him. He then followed the ball-flinging with a headbutt, meriting an ejection.
Here it is in all its glory:
(Reminder: this is what passes for a fight in the NBA these days, a league where brawls have receded into memory.)
This was a rare loss of cool for Garnett, who usually drives opposing players into fits of madness while keeping his own head on straight. Three seasons ago, Carmelo Anthony stalked Garnett, then a Celtic, to the Madison Square Garden loading dock after Garnett trash talked him so hard, Anthony wanted to physically assault him (this was famously known as the “honey nut cheerio” incident, after Garnett was supposedly overheard telling Melo his wife tasted like the delicious breakfast cereal).
Garnett flipping out in such a fashion is testament to Dwight Howard’s ability to be a complete pain-in-the-ass on the court, using his gigantic frame to shove defenders far below the cylinder so he can turn around for an easy lay-in. It’s crude, but effective. And makes defenders crazy. In November of this year, another cool-headed player, Kevin Durant, apparently called Howard a “pussy” after a shoving match under the rim.
Of course, most of Howard’s ire is reserved for his former Laker teammate Kobe Bryant, who clashed with Howard during his single disastrous season in Los Angeles.
Check out this elbow Howard throws at a pestering Bryant during a game in October:
Dwight Howard is a great player, but possibly even a greater troll, bringing out the worst in NBA stars for the entertainment of us all.
Photos by Elsa / Getty Images