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Dwight Howard talks about maintaining his composure in the face of foul trouble.
Dwight Howard had a difficult time avoiding whistles Friday night against Memphis. Two were notched in nine seconds at the top of the third quarter, and a fourth personal followed about five minutes later. With 6:11 left to play, the Laker center was assessed an obvious fifth foul while trying to hook Zach Randolph on a move to the basket.
The way this night was shaking out, a DQ felt inevitable. Instead, Howard found a way to stay in the game, and even make a few big plays down the stretch. Afterward, the center was asked how he managed to avoid fouling out.
"I was just trying to stay composed," explained Howard. "I had lost my composure for a second and I just wanted to make up for it. Get some good stops on the defensive end, and just happy we got the win."
Earlier in the season, while obviously frustrated by health issues and self-conscious about his periodically awkward fit in L.A., Howard would almost certainly have grown too frazzled to stay on the floor. That he conquered adversity reflects Howard's growth since the All-Star break. Hopefully, he'll only flourish even further along this path.
(All quotes courtesy of Time Warner Cable SportsNet's postgame coverage.)