This is simple: Dwight Howard is a beta-male. His tenure in Orlando proved that he wasn’t an alpha-male. The man has the hugest shoulders in the league – physically. But Howard can’t carry (or lead) a championship team. His demeanor has always been naturally beta. Alpha-males are haughty, exacting and serious when circumstances warrant. Howard is an affable, whimsical man with sometimesy concentration. He will not have to “fall back” as a Los Angeles Laker, since that would imply that he’s inclined toward stepping up and taking the reins.
Kobe recently said this:
"I got a question earlier about whose team this is. I don't want to get into the, 'Well, we share ...' No, it's my team. But I want to make sure that Dwight, when I retire, this is going to be his. I want to teach him everything I possibly know so that when I step away this organization can ride on as if I never left."
No one should be concerned about whether Howard and Kobe can coexist; that Howard might try to make power moves on some coup ish. He’ll gladly play the backseat. And he’ll be awesome playing that backseat. Howard is the rare beta-beast. It’s not that he’s soft or weak. He’s a monster. But more like a James P. “Sully” Sullivan-type monster.
Here’s what should concern Lakerland about Kobe’s quote: the prospect of the Lakers as Howard’s team. Maybe Howard will learn from Kobe’s example. Maybe Nash will drop gems on him and rewire his natural state of being. Maybe. But three years from now, when the Lakers need an alpha to step into the Kobe Void, they might still have a 7-foot beta-beast not fit for the gig.