Report: Howard to join Rockets

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Updated: 7/11/2013 2:01 pm

Houston, TX (Sports Network) - Free agent center Dwight Howard has reportedly decided to join the Houston Rockets.

According to a USA Today report, the seven-time All-Star will ink a deal with the Rockets, ending a nearly 20-month saga regarding the future of the dominant big man.

Howard, the most coveted free agent of the 2013 offseason, was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers from the Orlando Magic following several trade requests last summer in a four-team deal.

Howard underwent back surgery last April and spent much of the offseason rehabbing. Howard is currently suffering from a torn labrum in his right shoulder, but that injury will not require surgery to repair.

The 27-year-old averaged 17.1 points and a league-leading 12.4 rebounds per game.

The Dallas Mavericks, Los Angeles Lakers, Golden State Warriors and Atlanta Hawks were also involved in the recruiting process.

Howard was named NBA Defensive Player of the Year three times (2009-2011) and led the Magic to the NBA Finals in 2009, where they were ousted by the Lakers in five games.

In Houston, Howard will team up with All-Star guard James Harden, along with guard Jeremy Lin and forwards Chandler Parson and Omer Asik.

The Rockets were eliminated in the first round of the 2013 NBA Playoffs in six games by the top-seeded Oklahoma City Thunder.

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