Now the hard part starts.

Doing nothing at all.

The Lakers ended their two-hour meeting Tuesday with Dwight Howard without any assurances he'll stay, let alone when he'll make his decision on his free-agent options. He soon traveled to Aspen, Colo., where his agents Dan Fagen and Happy Walters will recap everything surrounding his visits this week with the Houston Rockets, Atlanta Hawks, Golden State Warriors, Dallas Mavericks and Lakers.

"Great meetings with @DwightHoward," Walters tweeted on Wednesday. "Group Going 2 get some mountain air to clear the mind and make some decisions."

Howard plans to sign his contract on July 10, the first day free agents can do so. But it's possible he could alert which team he'd play for before that, perhaps as early as Friday. Still, one source familiar with the Lakers' thinking expects it will be "several days" before Howard makes his decision.

The Lakers acted more swiftly, however, in removing a banner outside Staples Center asking Howard to stay.

A week ago, the team unveiled a banner on the side of Staples Center with a photo of Howard along with the message "STAY" and the hashtag "#STAYD12."