Now that the whole Dwight Howard trade rumors and saga is finally over, one of the questions
everyone is asking "Are the Lakers now the best team in the league?" Well in my humble opinion
I think they are. Why? Well for starters, Dwight Howard wants to play for a winner and he already has proved he is capable of carrying a team single handily on his back (which he will not need to do in L.A.)when he led the Orlando Magic to their 2nd NBA Finals appearance in franchise history.
What the Lakers are essentially getting in Howard is a player who offers the total package.
He can score, play defense, rebound, block. And out of those the most important aspect of his game
is in fact his defensive game. Not that Howard's offense isn't going to significantly improve the Lakers
offense (because it will) but his defensive game is what makes him stand out. Ever since his second season
in the NBA, Orlando coach Brian Hill wanted to make sure he groomed Howard into a full fledged
Center,(much like he did with Shaquille O'Neal who coincidentally also went from Orlando to L.A.) by making him work on his defensive game. And did it ever pay off. Dwight went on to establish
himself as one of the elite defenders in the game. Which is hard to argue with,with his(Howard) honors
of being selected to NBA All Defensive 1st Team four times. And in the process became a
3x NBA Defensive Player of the Year (all consecutively).
So looking at what Dwight Howard has to offer for the Lakers, it is apparent that he is the missing
piece to the puzzle for the Lakers to be championship favorites again. Kobe Bryant has 5 rings and tremendous scoring ability. Pau Gasol one of the better low post scoring players in the league.
Steve Nash adds a good veteran presence for the younger players. And now Dwight Howard.
With his own scoring ability, as well as his own great play in the low post and
even only at the age of 26 is already entering his 9th NBA season.
So he has the experience as well. He is giving the L.A. Lakers the best defensive player in the league.
Now the only question remains, are they the team to beat? I think so, but only time will tell.
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