(Pat Sullivan / AP)

Dwight Howard made his debut with the Houston Rockets on Wednesday and let’s just say it looks promising.

Very, very promising.

Howard looked healthy and at home, with 17 points and 26 rebounds in the Rockets’ 96-93 victory over Charlotte, and James Harden scored 21 points. (The 26 boards ties his career best.) Just before tipoff, Howard, who had back surgery in the summer of 2011 and battled other injuries and issues with the Lakers, said it really hit him that he wasn’t in L.A. anymore.

“When I stood there and looked around, I thought to myself, ‘I’ve got an amazing opportunity here, and I’m not going to let it go to waste,'” Howard, the summer’s big free-agent name, told Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo Sports.  “It hit me there: This is what I chose. This is what I decided to do.”

So far, so good.