There’s Nothin’ Wrong With A Little Man Love

Today I’d like to start my weekly installments of the MCOW Award, otherwise known as my Man Crush of the Week.


For those of you not familiar with the term, “Man Crush,” it is simply an expression of one man’s respect and admiration for another man. Often times a MC extends beyond simple admiration to the point where you find yourself daydreaming about him or feel butterflies when you hear his name mentioned.


Let’s get something straight (no pun intended); a Man Crush has nothing to do with sexual attraction. It’s just like in middle school when you suddenly and inexplicably find yourself attracted to the nerdy girl in class. You can’t put your finger on it, but for some reason you just can’t take your eyes off her. 


You don’t want to admit it and risk getting ridiculed mercilessly by your friends, so you just chalk it up to hormones and hope that it goes away in a couple days. And usually it does.


For example, my first Man Crush came in 2001, when the Lakers were playing the 76ers in the NBA Finals. Having not seen much of Allen Iverson (that year’s MVP) during the regular season, I found myself mesmerized when he dropped 48 points to single-handedly deal the Lakers their only loss of the postseason in Game 1 (and humiliate the self-proclaimed “Iverson-stopper,” Tyronn Lue, in the process).


 I don\'t think Tyronn had a man-crush on him

Iverson’s remarkable performance (and his dreamy brown eyes) left me swooning over him for about a week, at which time the crush subsided and moved on (probably to Kobe).


Now that you have a reference point, I would like to hand out the inaugural MCOW Award to none other than…Orlando Magic Center Dwight Howard.


This one’s probably long overdue, as the crush hit its apex during his mind-boggling performance in the dunk contest earlier this year, which led me to use the image of his “superman” dunk as my desktop background. Howard, 6’11” 265-lbs., displayed the agility and leaping ability of a guard while bringing the dunk contest back to where Vince Carter left it in 2000.



Howard took the next step this year, becoming the most dominant big man (21 points, 16 rebounds per game) since Shaq’s glory years (yes, they’re over Shaq). He put up ungodly numbers (22 points, 18 rebounds, 4 blocks per game) in the first round against the “best” Toronto had to offer (cue Stephen A. Smith exclaiming “Rasho Nesterovic!”), and has now boldly taken the Magic where Tracy McGrady has never gone before.


After having a tough series opener in Detroit, Dwight bounced back to almost lead his team to victory in game 2. He then gave the Pistons a solid thumping in game 3, officially announcing his presence as a playoff force.


Add to the list of accolades that on Thursday he was named to the All-NBA First Team, and it’s easy to see why I have developed a Man-Crush on big Dwight Howard.


Who knows where Cupid’s Arrow will land next week.

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