Magic’s Howard out with back spasms vs. Nuggets

Magic center Dwight Howard will sit out for the first time this

season because of back spasms.

The team announced that Glen Davis will start in Howard’s place

when Orlando hosts Denver on Sunday night.

Howard missed practice Saturday complaining of soreness in his

back. Magic coach Stan Van Gundy said prior to the game Sunday that

the team was sending tape to the league office of Howard being

punched in the back by Mavericks center Brendan Haywood during a

loss to Dallas on Friday night.

Haywood denied the accusation to reporters Sunday.

Howard has missed a mere seven games in his eight NBA seasons.

Only three were because of injury, while the rest were due to

either illness or suspension.