The key to the Spurs-Lakers series will be the play of Tiago Splitter.
Given the Laker's inside strength, this will be a twin-towers battle. Duncan can handle Gasol, but can Splitter handle Howard? This will be Coach Pop's main concern.
Not only will Tiago have to play tough defense, he will have to do so while preserving his fouls. With Diaw out, we have fewer fouls to use on Howard. Coach Pop will certainly use Hack-a-Howard to keep him from getting into an offensive zone. Hell, given his recent comments, it's already in Howard's head! Coach will be dancing in his head (and D'Antoni's too) for the next few games! Should be fun to watch!
Nevertheless, as long as our big three are decent (which I fully expect), we should be fine otherwise. If our big three all get off, Howard can score as much as foul trouble will allow.