Dwight Howard vs. Kobe Bryant: A Great Second Prize For the Finals
Dwight Howard had his best game ever in the postseason, scoring 40 points and becoming such a force down low that Cleveland had nobody to stop him.
Rashard Lewis has turned out to be a great signing by the Magic, as he banked 18 points last night.
The Magic faced a tough road getting here, with all of their series thus far going six games or more.
The starting lineup is playing of its capability, which is a potential top-five in the league. Rafer Alston has been a great acquisition for the Magic, who acquired the guard from Houston when Jameer Nelson went down.
The NBA Finals are now set in stone: Orlando Magic vs. Los Angeles Lakers.
Of course, the world is going to want to see grief and sobbing because we do not get a chance to see LeBron James vs. Kobe Bryant, a series that would be equivalent to a Larry Bird/Magic Johnson matchup so long ago.
Pipe down people, this is a great second act. In fact, if this is the "second best" Finals the NBA has to offer this season, it's going to be a show.
Orlando was 2-0 against the Lakers this season. Does this hint how the series could turn out? After all, the Magic were also successful in the regular season against the Cavs.
Will it be any different?
The matchups in the series are going to be something you want to watch.
We have Mickael Pietrus going up against Kobe Bryant. Pietrus did one of the better jobs of guarding Lebron James, and if he can make the same impact, it could be a positive for the Magic.
However, the biggest interest of matchups are with the forward and center spot.
The forward matchups are Lewis vs. Odom, Turkoglu vs. Gasol, and Hoard vs. Bynum.
The Magic are going to get a bit of an edge because of their size, as they are all over 6'10".
Dwight Howard is also going to need another big series, as he is going to have key positions against Gasol and Bynum.
Pau Gasol was a big contributor in the Denver series, while nobody on the Nuggets could stop him.
The Magic did show signs of giving up easy baskets. They can't afford to let the Lakers take advantage of that opportunity.
This series is going to be an exciting one to watch. I believe the Magic give the Lakers a tougher matchup than the Cavs, which is going to make it a more competitive series.
Most importantly, it features Dwight Howard vs. Kobe Bryant.
Both trying to prove they are the real MVP.
Bryant, a proven All-Star and a future Hall of Famer vs. Howard, the young star who is continuing his rise to the top of the NBA.
The showcasing of these two stars will help make up for the series that is wanted.
This series is sure worth the watch, and is probably one of the better "second prize series" we will ever witness in the NBA Finals.
Matt Miselis is a writer for Bleacherreport.com
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