The Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder are going to give us the heavyweight matchup that many have longed for. While the team dynamics make for an interesting matchup, the money is being paid to see LeBron James and Kevin Durant square off against each other.
The three-time MVP versus the three-time scoring champ on the center stage. Which begs an interesting question, is this the biggest superstar matchup in the finals since Barkley vs. Jordan? Magic vs. Bird? Ewing vs. Olajuwon?
Big ups to the good folks over at Daily Thunder for detailing this point with further granularity:
The LeBron versus KD matchup is the biggest superstar head-to-head in The Finals since...? Since when? Can you think of a bigger one? I went all the way back to Clyde Drexler versus Michael Jordan in 1992. Am I missing one in there? Some mentioned on Twitter to me Patrick Ewing against Hakeem Olajuwon and Shaq against Olajuwon. Definitely good calls, but I can't remember. Hard to quantify the size of LeBron vs. KD against those. Maybe it's as big as MJ vs. Magic in 1991?
We're talking probably the top player in the league against the second best player in the league. MVP vs. runner-up MVP. (Via @ThunderStats, Drexler-MJ was the last time an MVP faced off with an MVP runner-up.) LeBron and the anti-LeBron. In terms of an individual head-to-head, I'm not sure I can think of a bigger one. Durant against LeBron is going to be a massively massive matchup to watch.
One becomes an NBA champion. One is left searching. Wow.
Personally, its something I compelled when I saw Durant facing off with James during the 2012 NBA All-Star game. Now this vision has come to fruition, and all we have to do is wait another 48 hours.
For more on the 2012 NBA Finals between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Miami Heat check out Welcome To Loud City and Peninsula Is Mightier. For more news and notes from around the NBA head over to SB Nation's NBA Basketball page.