Dwight Howard is the newest proclaimed update of Superman. He is a much different incarnation than Los Angeles’ previous Man of Steel. As much as he tries to say the right thing and do the right thing, he does not get the pulse of the room like the Man of Steel sporting his cape and number 32. But regardless of the off the court problems, on the court Dwight Howard has the chance to show the eager Lakers faithful what they all hoped all year–that Dwight Howard really is Superman.
He got off to a good start in his first chance to be Superman and carry the Lakers the last few big steps into the playoffs, which hopefully will extend beyond 4 games there. Against the Spurs Sunday night Howard had 26 points on 9-15 shooting with 17 rebounds. With both his back to the basket and his face up game, he finally showed an array of runners and jump hooks. Howard had been invisible on the offensive end this year because he had been an ineffective 1 on 1 scorer.
But now that Kobe is out for the foreseeable future with a torn achilles tendon, we get a preview into the Lakers we have been promised. A team led by a dominant big man in the post, to eat up boards and block shots, and make at least 50% of his free throws after Kobe retires triumphantly into the sunset. It has been widely proclaimed Howard has the physical tools, but this is his first opportunity to dispay he has the mental ability. He needs to drop the Clark Kent routine and be Superman until the Lakers troubled season comes to a close.
If Sunday’s Superman is the Dwight Howard we can count on in any remaining games for the Lakers, then there will be more than 1 game for him to defy us mere mortals. But if this is just a flash in the pan, like all of Dwight Howard’s outstanding performances this year, the Lakers will have to cross their fingers that Utah loses one of their 2 remaining games.
Because Dwight Howard seems to be his own Kryptonite.