Another day, another scenario, and the Lakers held steady on Saturday to the hope Gary Payton could be content with less money in Los Angeles, and that Karl Malone would not grow impatient in Salt Lake City while Payton chose his career path.
Even as the Milwaukee Bucks apparently pondered the possibilities of sign-and-trade deals involving Payton with the Portland Trail Blazers and Indiana Pacers, and as the game's headline free agents â€” Jason Kidd and Jermaine O'Neal â€” prepared to roll through Texas, the Lakers awaited the call from Payton that might flick the first off-season domino.
Aaron Goodwin, Payton's agent, spoke to General Manager Mitch Kupchak on Saturday. Goodwin said that he would like to give the Lakers their answer within 48 hours, and that he'd wished the Bucks would work toward a sign-and-trade with the Lakers.
Of all the possible destinations for his client, Goodwin said, "If I was a betting guy, I'd say the most attractive place for Gary is in L.A."