Most Intriguing Potential NBA Finals Matchups for Next Season

Bryant Knox@@BryantKnoxFeatured ColumnistJune 16, 2012

Most Intriguing Potential NBA Finals Matchups for Next Season

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    The NBA Finals may have just begun, but with the 2011-13 NBA season rapidly coming to an end, it’s never too early to take a look at the most intriguing matchups that could take place this time next season.

    This year’s battle is going to be tough to beat considering the numerous storylines surrounding the Miami Heat and Oklahoma City Thunder, but a couple of marquee matchups could easily challenge this year’s excitement.

Miami Heat vs. Los Angeles Lakers

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    The league finally got its coveted superstar battle in this year’s NBA Finals, but the matchup that fans and media alike have been waiting to see for years is LeBron James versus Kobe Bryant.

    The two megastars have never played more than two games a year against each other, and having them be the showcase of the championship would undoubtedly attract the avid fans as well as the casual watchers.

    The Lakers have been knocked out of the second round two years in a row now, and while the Lakers are an aging team, Bryant is still on top of his game. Having averaged the second-most points per game this season, Bryant still has the drive to win and the ability to make it happen.

    Watching him match up against James and Dwyane Wade would be the second star-studded contest in a row, and would make for one heck of a 2013 championship showing.

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Chicago Bulls

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    While Miami Heat fans are enjoying their second straight appearance in the NBA Finals, Chicago Bulls fans are simply wondering, what if?

    Despite being the No. 1 seed in the Eastern Conference this season, the Bulls fell to the Philadelphia 76ers following the season-ending injury to Derek Rose in the first round of the NBA playoffs.

    If Derek Rose had stayed healthy, would the Bulls be the ones representing the East in the finals this season?

    The matchups in this series can’t compete with the one between LeBron James and Kevin Durant, but a Russell Westbrook-Derrick Rose faceoff would be a point guard battle for the ages. 

Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Miami Heat

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    Depending on how the rest of the 2012 NBA Finals pans out, we could very well have a new rivalry on our hands between the Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder.

    The battle of the Big Threes is exciting, but this potential rivalry will forever be sparked by the competition between the two best players on the court—Kevin Durant and LeBron James.

    James and Durant finished first and second in the MVP voting this season. Watching them go head-to-head in the NBA Finals is like getting a glimpse of what the future of the NBA truly looks like.

    Rematches aren’t always what people drool over in the NBA, but with these two teams are ready to start their own dynasties, this matchup could be one of the most intriguing ones the league has to offer for years to come.