Dwight Howard Named To All-NBA First Team

Orlando Magic Superman Dwight Howard, who lead his team to the Third Seed in the Eastern Conference with a 59-23 regular season record while averaging 20.6 points, 13.8 rebounds, and 2.9 blocks, was named to the All-NBA First Team for the second consecutive season. He led the league in both blocks and rebounds being fourth player in history to do so. Howard received the third most First Team place votes with 116.

The All-NBA Teams were voted on by 122 sports writers and broadcasters, with a First Team Vote being worth 5 points and Second and Third Team votes being worth 3 and 1 points respectively. Howard also finished third in the points with 598.

Howard’s dominance is further demonstrated by the First Team votes received by other centers. Yao Ming was the only other center to receive a First Team vote with 8. This status as the clear-cut elite center in the NBA is a great sign for Orlando.

Orlando is often discounted as an elite franchise, and there is the perception that star players cannot exist in the Orlando market. The success of Howard will have a trickle down effect that will create respect for other players on the team and the Magic organization in general.

Superstars are the only players offered national advertising campaigns. Coming off of an impressive Olympic performance, Howard was able to elevate his profile enough to begin partnering with Dwayne Wade and Charles Barkley in the popular T-Mobile “Fav Five” commercials.

Being featured in national campaigns opens up more opportunities for Howard and other Magic players to earn ancillary dollars marketing products off the court. These extra sources of income are what steer free agents to large markets such as Los Angeles and New York.

Although Orlando will never be as lucrative as New York for players and advertisers, players like Howard, who are able to establish themselves as a national and international brand, create the buzz needed to bring in more powerful advertisers.

That advertising exposure is what ends up being the difference between landing a Carlos Boozer free agent instead of a Charlie Villanueva. Magic GM Otis Smith is shrewd, as he has showed in deals like the one that brought in Rafer Alston, and he will be able to leverage the increased exposure Howard provides. The difference between the Magic this year and the Magic team that will win a Championship is only a player-upgrade or two. With Howard’s help, Orlando just may have the clout to pull off some of those changes.

Below is a list of the All-NBA Teams:

2008-09 ALL-NBA FIRST TEAM

Position Player, Team (1st Team Votes) Points

Forward LeBron James, Cleveland (122) 610

Forward Dirk Nowitzki, Dallas (35) 383

Center Dwight Howard, Orlando (116) 598

Guard Kobe Bryant, L.A. Lakers (119) 604

Guard Dwyane Wade, Miami (103) 572

2008-09 ALL-NBA SECOND TEAM

Position Player, Team (1st Team Votes) Points

Forward Tim Duncan, San Antonio (39) 378

Forward Paul Pierce, Boston (27) 330

Center Yao Ming, Houston (8) 354

Guard Brandon Roy, Portland 189

Guard Chris Paul, New Orleans (32) 424

2008-09 ALL-NBA THIRD TEAM

Position Player, Team (1st Team Votes) Points

Forward Carmelo Anthony, Denver (2) 116

Forward Pau Gasol, L.A. Lakers (2) 165

Center Shaquille O’Neal, Phoenix 68

Guard Chauncey Billups, Denver 131 Guard Tony Parker, San Antonio (1) 158

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