Sorry Cavs fans, but the truth sometimes hurts. The Cavs would have had similar matchup problems with the Lakers as they did with the Magic. If the Lakers put Lamar Odom at the 4, you’ve got a similar Rashard Lewis at the 4 with the Magic. The Lakers don’t have the dominate big man though like the Magic, so that would have been more of an advantage for the Cavs. Then there’s the matchup that I don’t need to mention…all that you really need to know is one puppet went home.
I want to talk about Howard vs. Gasol and Bynum. I’ve heard talk about how if Gasol can get Howard in foul trouble then the series is over. So I ask this…If Howard gets Gasol in foul trouble, then what? Bynum? I really mean no offense by this but…sucka please! I read a very interesting stat today. In the two matchups this season between the Magic and Lakers, Howard out rebounded Bynum 32-4. That’s just sick. Neither Bynum nor Gasol can guard Howard down low consistently. It’s going to take a huge effort on every play from at least one of them, and I don’t see that happening. Another question for you is this…Will Gasol and Bynum be more intimidated to come into Howard’s paint? I think they will. I think you’ll see Gasol settle on more jumpers when he would normally drive. Of course the potential is there to draw the foul, but I don’t see that being a risk either is willing to take frequently.
Now lets talk strategy for the Magic. It’s simple really. Do what you did against the Cavs. Let Kobe get his because he’s going to. Stick Peitrus and Lee on him throughout the whole game with Turk helping when needed. Focus on shutting down Gasol then Odom and then Fisher. Bynum won’t beat you and neither will Ariza. (Personal note…I’m a big Ariza fan. I wish the Magic had held on to him.) Sounds simple right? Actually yes, just as simple as it was against the Cavs. The Lakers will be tougher opponent obviously, but as long as the Magic continue doing what they’ve been doing, the Magic get the golden basketball. I’m not ashamed or embarrassed to say in as much of a non-homer was as I can…Magic will win the series. I hope.