Congrats to Adam Shambert and his Chicago Bulls for a great run, but we in Orlando think that run ends here in the Magic Kingdom and here's why:
Homecourt advantage will be a big factor here between two very good teams, which we own. We feel we have built an elite defensive team obviously anchored around Dwight Howard. Chicago's biggest strength is it's big man rotation. Well, we have Dwight Howard and Chuck Hayes down low to stop them in their tracks. I don't see either guy being able to stop Howard down offensively or be able to hold him down defensively and Hayes has always been known as a very good defensive player.
Granger and Deng will be an extremely fun match-up at SF. They went at each other last year in the playoffs, and will do it again here. Granger averaged 21.6 PPG, 5.6 RPG and 3.2 APG vs. Deng in the playoffs last year with a 55.6 TS% and a 52.2 eFG%.
Lee and Sefolosha again, another great match-up this time between two similarly skilled players. Both, awesome defenders. Courtney Lee, a much better offensive threat though.
At PG, we have Mike Conley vs. Kyle Lowry. Once again, another excellent match-up. Lowry gets a lot of praise for his play this year but Mike Conley has very similar stats. Conley (12.8 PPG, 6.8 APG and 2.5 RPG) and Lowry (15.3 PPG, 7.0 APG and 5.0 RPG). Both have been known as solid defenders.
Off the bench, we feel we have the edge here. We are loaded. We've got our main combo guard Iman Shumpert playing lockdown defense at PG/SG. Another good defender in Jimmy Butler who has guarded guys like LeBron James and Carmelo Anthony recently in only his rookie year. Our sharpshooter James Jones. Lamar Odom returns to a role much more comfortable to him, playing PF and getting the majority of the game's minutes there over Hayes as we start him for defensive purposes. Odom gives us that scoring, playmaking and leadership role off the bench. Robin Lopez is a very solid player who will back-up Dwight Howard when he needs a breather.
All in all, this series will definitely go 6 or 7 games but we feel we have the better team, that all fits together with Dwight being our go to guy, Granger playing next to Howard just opens so much for his already skilled offensive game. Throw in very solid role players who can shoot the 3 when Dwight gets doubled and he kicks it out to them like Conley, CLee, JJones (and Granger) as well as our elite defense and we think we got this one.