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Kemba Walker sees success in Dwight Howard’s future in Washington

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NBA: Charlotte Hornets at Atlanta Hawks Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

NEW YORK — Dwight Howard might have a rep for being a “bad locker room guy,” but that’s not the experience Kemba Walker had playing with the star center in Charlotte. The Hornets traded Howard to Brooklyn where he ultimately reached a buyout before joining the Wizards on a two-year deal. But Walker told reporters on Thursday he completely enjoyed his time playing with one of his favorite players in the league.

“It was cool man. I’ve always been a huge fan of Dwight,” he told media after his appearance at the NBPA’s second annual youth summer basketball camp at Basketball City. “He’s always been one of the guys who I’ve always wanted to play with. Growing up, Dwight was a beast. It was good. Unfortunately it didn’t work out. Sometimes teams don’t do well. That’s just the nature of the game. I played with plenty of other guys who came to the team. It just didn’t work out. For the one season we had, it was fun.

“It sucks that we didn’t go as far as we wish we could have but I had a pretty good season individually, and Dwight had a great season individually. Now he’s gonna move on — he’s in Washington now.”

Howard joins a Wizards team that hasn’t been able to get over the playoff hump in recent years. They traded Marcin Gortat to the Clippers for Austin Rivers in a preemptive move that created a space at center, one Howard eventually filled when Washington signed him on the buyout market.

Walker believes Howard and Washington may have just formed a mutually beneficial relationship. Asked if he believes the Wizards are a good fit for Howard, the All-Star point guard said: “I think so. I think so.”

“John is a helluva player. one of the best passers in our league. I think he’s gonna open up so many opportunities for Dwight. I think Dwight’s gonna help those guys as well. It’s gonna be fun to watch. They have so many dynamic players on the team between John and [Bradley Beal]. It’s gonna open up so much for Dwight so it’ll be good for him.”