Not so fast. The Miami Heat may have a qualm or two with such a hasty assumption.
You remember the Heat, don't you? That ol' superteam that hoisted the Larry O'Brien Trophy not two months ago. The one that still employs the best player on the planet (LeBron James), one of the top perimeter slashers in the game today (Dwyane Wade), and a skilled big man (Chris Bosh) who'd fit right in at Jurassic Park. The same one that lured Hall-of-Fame three-point specialist Ray Allen to South Beach to join its bench mob.
Yeah, the Heat are still pretty good and deserve to be the prohibitive favorites to defend their title until someone proves capable of knocking them off their perch.
To be sure, the Lakers could be the team to do it, what with the size and skill of Howard and Pau Gasol to punish Miami on the interior. At the very least, the Purple and Gold own a prominent seat at the table of contenders after swooping on Superman, and should leave most of the NBA trembling in fear as a result.
Just not the Miami Heat, and here's why.