Howard ripped into his team for what he saw as a lack of effort in Orlando's 93-67 loss to the New Orleans Hornets Friday night, the Magic's third loss in their past four games.
"I look at guys and they don't look like they want to play," Howard said following the lopsided loss.
"I told them at halftime, 'If you don't want to play, just stay in the locker room, because it don't make sense for a team who we should beat to just demolish us.' "
Howard had 28 points and 16 rebounds, but was the only player in double figures in any statistic for the Magic, who continued to slump after blowing a 27-point lead to Boston a night earlier. Starting with the third quarter against the Celtics, the Magic have now gone six straight quarters without scoring 20 points in any of them.
"It hurts to get out there and you play your hardest and you expect everybody to play the same way, and I'm not calling anybody out by no means because we all have to get better ... but if you don't want to be out there, don't dress up," Howard said. "If you don't want to play, stay home. People work too hard. I want to win a championship. I work too hard every night for anybody to not want to go out there and play hard. ...
"None of the -- whatever, trade stuff -- none of that stuff matters. Play basketball. That's why we all get paid to do this, because we love the game and it's basketball, so why not give it your all?"
Orlando shot only 39 percent (24 of 61) and turned the ball over 23 times, the most by any Hornets opponent this season. New Orleans converted those turnovers into 28 points.
"They killed us because they just played hard and they wanted it," Howard said. "Look at their roster, but they play hard every night. ... They kicked our butts tonight, not because they're a way better team than us, but because they play harder than us."
A report on SheridanHoops.com, citing a source with knowledge of the situation, said Howard has also added the Los Angeles Clippers to his trade wish list.
Information from The Associated Press was used in this report.