Dwight Howard certainly gets around. Aside from prepping this month to play for his sixth team in six seasons, which has to be close to a record, the NBA veteran has fathered children with five women over the years.
Howard and women are in the news at the moment, but it has nothing to do with a romance. Rather, two women who worked for the new Philadelphia 76ers center/forward are saying Howard has slithered away from paying them for caring for the player’s huge snake.
Dwight Howard is fitting in with the Philadelphia 76ers
The Philadelphia 76ers have a couple of major pieces of their foundation in place in the form of Joel Embiid and Ben Simmons. Embiid is the 26-year-old center and Simmons is the 24-year-old point guard.
Three straight early failures in the NBA playoffs have had observers speculating about leadership and chemistry questions on the roster, and the impending season is considered a potential referendum on whether management needs to start fresh. The 76ers have already edged toward that direction by bringing in Doc Rivers as the head coach and trading starters Al Horford and Josh Richardson. A deal that they would have liked to have made, dumping the final four years and $149 million of Tobias Harris’ deal, didn’t happen.
Newcomers Danny Green and Seth Curry are the key acquisitions on the court. The most interesting move, however, was signing Dwight Howard to a free-agent contract. At 35 years old, Howard has been around long enough to know what needs to be done to shape the team.
“(Rivers) has told me my role from the beginning,” Howard said. “So I’m super excited about him just telling me what he expects from me every night, and what he expects from me in the locker room. Not just on the court but what he expects off the court from me, as far as teaching and being the right example for the younger guys.”
His life off the court isn’t what the average person experiences
Dwight Howard entered the NBA in 2004 with the Orlando Magic as the No. 1 overall selection in the draft. He’s led the league in rebounding five times and blocked shots twice en route to making the All-Star team eight times.
Howard has earned more than $243 million in salary thus far, which supports a lifestyle that the average American can’t identify with. For starters, there are his five children with five different women, according to Sports Illustrated.
When the COVID-19 pandemic hit late this winter, Howard rode out the NBA’s 20-week hiatus on his 23-acre Georgia estate, which includes a gym, basketball court, and pool. While spending time with his children, Howard told ESPN that he was also mourning the death of Melissa Rios, the mother of 6-year-old son David. Rios died on March 27, 2020, following an epileptic seizure in her California home.
Dealing with that was understandably difficult. Now, the Georgia estate is the source of the latest trouble in Howard’s life.
Two women who cared for his snakes are suing Howard
A lawsuit filed by two women who say they worked for Dwight Howard for just over a year having filed a lawsuit against the NBA player in a financial dispute. Armica Nabaa and Kamisha Shelman are seeking to collect at least $50,000 in unpaid wages after being fired this past January, TMZ reported.
The women’s suit says Howard hired them in December 2018 to provide business and administrative services. However, they said they were made to handle household tasks after Howard dismissed a butler, maid, and groundskeeper who had been keeping the 35,000-square-foot mansion running.
Nabaa and Shelman said one of the menial tasks that they inherited following that shakeup was to care for Howard’s collection of nearly two dozen snakes. Howard’s collection has been featured on Animal Planet’s Tanked and incudes a constrictor named Cleopatra that can grow to 25 feet and 200 pounds.
Nabaa and Shelman said they were fired unexpectedly in January and are owed back wages. With Howard in training camp in preparation for the Philadelphia 76ers’ Dec. 23 opener, it is not known who is caring for the snakes and the Georgia estate at the moment.
All stats courtesy of Basketball Reference.