Stephen A. Smith Claps Back at Kyle Kuzma After Being Called Out for Dwight Howard Diss - Lakers Daily

Stephen A. Smith Claps Back at Kyle Kuzma After Being Called Out for Dwight Howard Diss

Kyle Kuzma and Dwight Howard Lakers Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Sports pundit Stephen A. Smith caught a lot of flack after he compared Los Angeles Clippers star Paul George to Los Angeles Lakers big man Dwight Howard.

He said George runs the risk of becoming the next Howard in the sense that Howard was once one of the faces of the NBA before falling from grace.

Many people came to Howard’s defense, saying that George has never reached the heights that Howard did as a star. Amongst those defenders was Howard’s current Lakers teammate Kyle Kuzma.

Now, Smith has responded to Kuzma’s message with a statement of his own.

There’s no doubt that Smith’s original statement struck a nerve with Howard’s fans. After all, Howard was once the face of an Orlando Magic team that advanced to the NBA Finals.

He’s also won the Defensive Player of the Year award three times in his career.

While he is certainly not the dominant force he once was, Howard has enjoyed a resurgent year with the Lakers this season. His numbers have not been eye-popping, as he averaged just 7.5 points and 7.3 rebounders per game during the regular season. What has stood out has been his willingness to put team success before personal success.

He’s been a fabulous teammate and cheerleader for his squad all season long. That was true even when Lakers head coach Frank Vogel took him out of the rotation in the team’s series versus the Houston Rockets.

Howard admitted the lack of playing time was hard, but accepted his role for that series with incredible maturity.

As for George, he and the Clippers were expected to at least advance to the Western Conference Finals, if not claim an NBA title this year. In the end, they lost to the Denver Nuggets after going up 3-1 in the seven-game series.

After dominating headlines for much the season, the Clippers have once again become the league’s punching bag.

As for Howard and the Lakers, they’ll face off against a confident Nuggets team for a chance to represent the West in the 2020 NBA Finals.