Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby Kobe8Fan on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:09 am

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By Gabriel Lee
LakersNation.com

The Los Angeles Lakers were ousted from the playoffs exactly a week and three days ago at the hands of the Oklahoma City

Thunder, and the Pau Gasol trade rumors have already began to emerge.

A couple days ago Sam Smith of NBA.com reported that the Laker forward wouldn’t mind playing for the Chicago Bulls. Predictably, Gasol scoffed at the reports when asked about it by Mark Medina of the L.A. Times.

The Gasol to the Chicago rumor isn’t the first trade rumor Laker fans have heard this off-season, and it certainly won’t be the last.

The problem with almost every trade rumor surrounding Gasol as the centerpiece is this: the Lakers simply can’t get equal trade value for him anymore.

Let’s take the trade to Chicago that Gasol reportedly desires for example. In order for the trade to make sense position wise and for the contracts to match, the Lakers would receive the Bulls’ Carlos Boozer along with a couple spare parts in return for Gasol.

While Boozer is a name most NBA fans are familiar with, acquiring him is not an upgrade to Gasol in any way, shape or form; especially not on the defensive end.

Tim Kawakami, a Mercury News sports columnist, recently compiled his annual no-defense team and Boozer is on it. Kawakami cited that the Bulls give up 8.6 more points per 100 possessions when Boozer was playing compared to when he watches from the sidelines.

So the Lakers would be giving up a two-time NBA champion, who’s an excellent scorer and passer and can hold his own defensively for a player renowned to require a point guard to create his offense for him, and is one of the worst defenders on the NBA’s best defensive team? Head scratches all around.

Other potential packages the Lakers could receive in return for Gasol (as suggested by Sam Smith) are as follows:

a.) Brandon Jennings, Drew Gooden and Luc Mbah a Moute from Milwaukee.

b.) Kyle Lowry, Luis Scola and Sam Dalembert from Houston.

c.) Anderson Varejao, Tristan Thompson from Cleveland.

The grass isn’t always greener on the other side, isn’t it? None of those moves make the Lakers better; and more importantly they don’t address the Lakers urgent needs if they are to get back onto the same level as the Thunder and the Spurs.

Looking back, Game 5 against the Thunder highlighted all of the Lakers’ weaknesses. When push came to shove, the offense relied too heavily on Kobe Bryant’s individual brilliance (42 points on 54 percent shooting). When they were called upon, the bench scored a grand total of five points. They couldn’t contain an explosive point guard despite upgrading from Derek Fisher to Ramon Sessions at the trade deadline. And, most glaringly, the Laker bigs couldn’t co-exist (go ahead and name me the last time Andrew Bynum and Gasol both had good games).

The Lakers would certainly need a heist similar to how they initially acquired Gasol in the first place in order to make a trade worthwhile.

Thus, it’s only logical to look to move Andrew Bynum, the other seven footer. As good as Bynum was this year, it was off-set by his repeated immaturity. Lest we forget this was only Bynum’s second year (2006-07 being the other one) when he was injury-free. Bynum’s stock is sky-high and the time to move him may be now.

Gasol’s frustration of being reduced to the third option for the first time in his NBA career was evident. Statistically, he averaged a career low in points, but it appeared while he accepted the role of operating out of the high post, he wasn’t comfortable with it. Gasol sacrificed his own production in order to allow Bynum to blossom akin to how Amar’e was never the same destructive force in New York once Carmelo was acquired. When two people want the ball in the same spots on the floor, things tend not to work out so well.

The way the Lakers are currently constructed it’s nearly impossible to get better without taking a risk on trading one of the big men because Kobe Bryant’s salary accounts for nearly 50 percent of the salary cap; and with the harsher luxury tax looming over Mitch Kupchak’s shoulders, the Lakers are in a bind. The very nature of Bryant’s contract implies the Lakers must build around him until his contract runs out.

We’ve seen how far the ceiling the core of Bryant, Gasol and Bynum can lead the Lakers to for two consecutive years now: the second round.

If now is not the time for change, then I’m afraid the Kobe Bryant era in Los Angeles will end in more wasted years of his life.

But to be blunt, any move the Lakers could make involving Gasol would just be making a move for the sake of making a move instead of re-opening the Lakers’ title window with Bryant in tow. Despite Gasol’s lackluster play in the last two years in the playoffs, you at least know what you’re going to get from him on a night-to-night basis. The same can’t be said about Bynum.

Moving either big man is risky business. But as I’ve just explained, shipping Gasol out of Tinseltown is a Catch-22.

Your move, Mitch Kupchak.


http://www.lakersnation.com/trading-pau ... 012/05/31/
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby laker911 on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:16 am

I'm sorry but if Pau has not been producing these past 2 playoffs, he definitely wont next season. Ship him out for someone who actually gives a damn.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby bystander on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:21 am

It's not complicated Lakers choices.

Kobe won't be traded.

Pau if traded probably won't bring a superstar or a star in return. You can only trade him for a package of good players or cap space and draft picks.

Drew if traded could bring back a star or even a superstar. He also can be traded by what Pau can bring but it would be foolish to do it.

If Lakers want to try to win now, Bynum will be traded if a great player come to LA. If not, Pau will be traded for a package of good players.

If they want to be competitive but their main goal is to put the franchise in a good position for the next big FAs and Bynum stardom, Pau will be traded for cap space and picks. Expect a angry Kobe Bryant and a lot of drama if that happens.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby The Rock on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:33 am

Few positives about Pau that might entice teams. Keep in mind these are regular season numbers

http://espn.go.com/blog/los-angeles/lakers/post/_/id/31163/2011-12-report-card-pau-gasol

Via Synergy, no Laker averaged more points per possession in the post than Gasol's .968. More positives: Only Dwight Howard and Kevin Love had more double-doubles. Gasol tied for the team lead in offensive rating, and led in win shares. Via 82 Games, the Lakers were 4.1 points better offensively with Gasol on the floor, and 4.5 points better defensively -- the best margins among L.A.'s Big Three.



Hopefully some team out there buys this.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby kray28 on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:41 am

Lakers are better off holding onto Pau...in trading him, the Lakers will be forced to eat bad contracts and/or settle for lower talent.

The former will not happen for sure, so if Pau is moved, it will be for trash basically.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby khmrP on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:51 am

article is correct, we'll def. either get pennies on the dollar or teams will try to dump their bad contracts on us. I thought the return for Shaq was garbage, the return for Pau will probably make that look like an all-star package.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby karacha on Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:54 am

I don't have anything against trading Pau - in theory. But I'm not sure if we can get anyone good for him... let alone two contributors most posters here are hoping for. I certainly don't want a Brian Grant, if you know what I mean. :bang:
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby jamabile on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:00 pm

Lol! We dumped Luke Walton and Jason Kapono for Ramon Sessions to the Cavs. There will be some team that will want Pau. Of course the thing that makes it challenging is obvious. The 19 million dollars he's earning. Does anyone know when his contract expires. If his contract was expiring, it would be a lot easier to move; however, there will be a suitor, and Pau will be on his way out.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby khmrP on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:13 pm

jamabile wrote:Lol! We dumped Luke Walton and Jason Kapono for Ramon Sessions to the Cavs. There will be some team that will want Pau. Of course the thing that makes it challenging is obvious. The 19 million dollars he's earning. Does anyone know when his contract expires. If his contract was expiring, it would be a lot easier to move; however, there will be a suitor, and Pau will be on his way out.


yea but we also lost a pick with that (also could get lower pick next season as well with that opt to swap by Clev) and Sessions whether it him or Potato Head offense, didn't turn out as good as we'd like. Besides that Walton expires next yr and we ended taking back Eyenga whos 3y'rs remaining adds up to Luke 1 yr left. So it all evened out in the end
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby pound4pound1 on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:16 pm

dont Kobe and Pau expire at the same time?


as for the article, option B sounds good
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby Doc Brown on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:19 pm

I'd rather not watch us flame out again because it's K-G-B or bust. Kobe will be another year older, Pau has flamed out the past two postseasons and I for one don't want to see number 3, Bynum is the enigma, that you don't know what you will get, night in and night out.

Then you have the rest of the team, which is probably the worst supporting cast in all of basketball.

Trade Gasol for what you can because if not, we are still the same team with no salary cap to sign players, no picks, no tradeable assets besides Pau / Bynum. We will comeback next year the same team, just another year older.

I don't want Pau on the team anymore, I'll take 19 million off the books over another flame out in the playoffs.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby Lakerjones on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:33 pm

bystander wrote:It's not complicated Lakers choices.

Kobe won't be traded.

Pau if traded probably won't bring a superstar or a star in return. You can only trade him for a package of good players or cap space and draft picks.

Drew if traded could bring back a star or even a superstar. He also can be traded by what Pau can bring but it would be foolish to do it.

If Lakers want to try to win now, Bynum will be traded if a great player come to LA. If not, Pau will be traded for a package of good players.

If they want to be competitive but their main goal is to put the franchise in a good position for the next big FAs and Bynum stardom, Pau will be traded for cap space and picks. Expect a angry Kobe Bryant and a lot of drama if that happens.


^^ Good post, Bystander. I basically agree with all you're saying here.

I'm not as convinced as most that Pau needs to be moved right now. I don't like the idea of taking back garbage for a player of his caliber. If there is a good enough trade out there that will net multiple players to fill the gaps and no bad contracts, then it'll probably go down and that's fair.

In Pau's defense, he played extremely well for us this year considering the fact that he was traded before the season started and he was so underutilized is Brown's terrible offense. I saw a lot more of the old competitive Gasol in him this year, even in the playoffs. Yes, he did underachieve at times against Denver. Yes, he didn't assert himself in the post with the second unit. But Rooscooter pointed out that might have actually been by design. I know that's hard to believe, but he could be on to something there. He should have done it regardless of course, but who knows what the hell Mike Brown was telling him out there.

I hate the idea of letting go of a guy that talented for next to nothing. I don't want to see us go from a third place Western Conference team and still a possible title contender down to a middle of the pack, barely scratch the playoffs team.

The thing that keeps nagging at me is that Pau wants to be a Laker for life. He loves it here. Even after they lost he was talking about how little they used the two man game with he and Kobe and how he wants to make that a priority next season. He and Kobe are veteran players who want to win it all together.

What worries me about Bynum is that he seems so focused on his own goals and his own play. It's a natural thing in a sense because he's a young player. We know that he is quite honest in his interviews and he said it doesn't matter to him where he plays and to a large extent I very much believe that is the case. It's not his main goal to remain a Laker and to win championships with Kobe. This is not to say that he can't or won't. It's just clear that it's not his biggest priority.

If it were up to me I would probably hold off on any kind of knee jerk reaction trades this summer and wait to see where the Lakers are at near the deadline.

The old adage is don't sell low, don't buy high. Pau's stock is pretty low now, and should be higher the following year as an expiring contract. Bynum's stock meanwhile is at an all time high. After next year he will be looking for a max contract either with the Lakers or someone else. So it very well may be in the Lakers best interest to shop him at the deadline. At least right now I wouldn't feel comfortable putting all my eggs into Bynum's basket as the next franchise player. But again, Lakers are in a good position to see how it all plays out next year before mid-season.
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Re: Trading Pau May Not Add Up for Lakers

Postby TIME on Fri Jun 01, 2012 12:40 pm

We've got 4 open threads discussing Pau trade possibilities. Don't need a 5th, and a Lakers Nation blog post doesn't qualify as newsworthy.
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