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Centers of Attention

Posted By Warren Shaw On Jan 21 2012 @ 2:19 am In Orlando Magic | No Comments

Orlando, Florida

So who is the best center in the NBA? Dwight Howard or Andrew Bynum?

On this night (and every night for that matter) it was Dwight Howard behind 21 points and 23 rebounds as the Magic defeated the Lakers 92-80 .  The Magic dominated the game from the opening tip sending the visibly tired Lakers to their second straight loss. Kobe Bryant led the Lakers with 30 points and 8 assists.

The Magic jumped out to a 22-10 lead at the first quarter’s and never looked back after Bynum (10 points and 12 rebounds) picked up two quick fouls in the quarter. The Lakers lackluster play became even more deflated by the hustle and constant second chance attempts by Orlando. The younger and slightly better rested Magic out-jumped the Lakers to grab 15 offensive rebounds on the evening.

Jameer Nelson paced the Magic offense with 17 points and 9 assists playing his best game of the season.  Derek Fisher was at the mercy of Nelson, who was able to set up his teammates by repeatedly beating Fisher off the dribble.  Coach Van Gundy praised his point guard after the game saying the difference was Nelson’s aggression and efficient shooting.

It was a true team effort but as it is with any Magic win they go as Howard goes. Any notion that there is a debate to be had regarding Howard and Bynum should have been put to rest after this evening.

Future Hall of Famer and former player Shaquille O’neal believes Andrew Bynum has the edge on Howard. [1] On every level possible O’neal’s take on that non-debate is absurd.  The absurdity of it has worn thin on Howard and he has had enough of O’neal taking jabs at him from the the analyst chair.

“I would suggest he just sit down and get on with his life. He don’t play no more so what’s the point of talking trash. It’s not like we’re wrestlers and we can battle it out. Who cares?” said Howard in an interview with the Orlando Sentinel.

Shaq probably wants nothing to do with Dwight anyway and he might have to change his tune about the league’s best center after Howard power drived Bynum tonight.

Orlando improves to 11-4 and currently leads the Southeast division over Miami by a 1/2 game.

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[1] Future Hall of Famer and former player Shaquille O’neal believes Andrew Bynum has the edge on Howard.: http://www.nba.com/video/channels/tnt_overtime/2012/01/17/20120116_top5_inside_4.nba/index.html

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