Magic-Lakers: Breaking Down the First Two Games

taylor eubanksContributor IJune 9, 2009

LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 07:  Dwight Howard #12 of the Orlando Magic looks on against the Los Angeles Lakers during Game Two of the 2009 NBA Finals at Staples Center on June 7, 2009 in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Jed Jacobsohn/Getty Images)

by Jacob Barber

The Orlando Magic are down two games to none in the NBA Finals.

In the first game of the two-game series, the Magic just had absolutely no answer for Kobe.

Kobe outscored everybody in a terrific game, scoring 40 points to carry the Lakers to an easy blowout win over the Magic.

The Magic seemed very out of sync, and unfocused on the task at hand.

Orlando's "Big Three" (Howard, Turkoglu, and Lewis) need to step up their game. Especially Turk.  When Hedo has a good game, he Magic are very tough to beat—almost like Lamar Odom for the Lakers.

In Game Two of the series, the Magic had to make some serious adjustments. Staying in the game for all four quarters, it came down to the last play of regulation.

Stan Van Gundy had to pull out a tricky play for the win with six-tenths of a second left. With Turk' inbounding the ball, Rashard Lewis set a pick for Courtney Lee, who had a straight line to the basket for a quick alley oop.  Courtney gets a perfect pass, and had a great look for the game winner, but he missed it.

What I don't understand is, where was Dwight?  Why put a critical Game Two in the unsure hands of a rookie when you have the biggest man on the floor and an easy alley-oop?

Dwight would have finished, and beaten the Lakers at the buzzer. He's done it before, right?

In overtime, the Lakers just outscored their opponent, despite a valiant effort from the Magic.

The difference for the Lakers was the play of their bench.  Phil Jackson is a master in the art of bench playing.  He has Lamar Odom on the bench for Andrew Bynum. When Bynum fouls out, Lamar comes in. 

I believe Lamar is a better player than Bynum, and you wouldn't think that once you put in your bench players it would get even better right?  And Lamar is better off playing on the bench in the second quarter, because when the Magic have their bench on the floor, and Lamar can be the best player on the floor.

Which brings me back to a point made earlier in this article—the Lakers are very tough to beat when Lamar Odom is on fire.