It was all the way back in 2009 when the upstart Orlando Magic led by former No. 1 pick Dwight Howard faced a much superior Los Angeles Lakers team in the NBA Finals. It resulted in Los Angeles taking the series in five games.
Now, more than a decade later, Howard is a member of the Lakers for a second time. The future Hall of Fame center has something to prove to himself as well as the rest of the Association.
Dwight Howard guarantees title if Lakers make it to NBA Finals
If the Lakers were to come out of Orlando with a title, it would represent Howard’s career going full circle. He starred with the Magic from 2004-12 before moving on to Los Angeles to join the late Bryant. That relationship lasted a total of one season and did not end on the greatest of terms.
Los Angeles Lakers are NBA title favorites
Howard’s promise isn’t necessarily too shocking given the Lakers’ status as favorites with the Milwaukee Bucks as the 2019-20 season resumes at Walt Disney World after a four-plus month hiatus.
For his part, the 34-year-old Howard has resurrected his career with LeBron James and Co. this season. The eight-time All-Star is averaging 7.5 points and 7.4 rebounds on an absurd 73% shooting from the field.
It would be something else if Howard is able to help his Lakers to an NBA title in Orlando the same year the organization saw one of the biggest tragedies in its history. The emotions would be in overdrive.