NBA Rumors: Why Los Angeles Lakers Should Trade Pau Gasol
Once the lockout was over in the NBA, the Los Angeles Lakers made headlines by trading two key players away—Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol. The Rockets and Hornets were also involved in the trade, which led the Lakers to acquiring Chris Paul. Unless you have lived under a rock for the past two months than you know NBA commissioner David Stern used his power as owner of the team to veto the trade.
What affect has it had on the Lakers?
Lamar Odom and the Lakers relationship was irretrievably broken, which forced the Lakers to trade Lamar Odom away to the Dallas Mavericks for a trade exception. Lamar has not played well at all, but his presence is missed in Los Angeles.
As for Pau Gasol, he is still with the Lakers. Gasol’s name has been linked to trade rumors as much as his teammates Andrew Bynum.
The Lakers should definitely look into trading Pau Gasol, again, if they want to stay successful for years to come.
Here are the reasons why the Los Angeles Lakers should trade Pau Gasol.
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Pau Gasol is currently 31 years old and has been in the NBA for 11 years. Prior to his time in the NBA, Gasol played professional basketball in Barcelona, Spain from 1998-2001. In other words, although Gasol seems to be relatively young, he has put on a lot of miles in his career.
It seems like a trend that most big men, power forwards included, start to decline in their mid 30’s. Tim Duncan, Shaquille O’Neal and Kevin Garnett are three names that come to mind who have recently seen a sharp decline in their game once they reached their mid 30’s. Both Duncan and Garnett were better power forwards than Gasol and were not immune to aging and declining in the NBA.
Pau Gasol is not getting any younger. The Lakers need youth to keep up with the rest of the NBA because if they keep the nucleus they have right now, then expect a lineup without Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol, Derek Fisher and Metta World Peace in four years.
His Trade Value
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Gasol still has high trade value and can bring in another superstar for the Lakers if they decided to trade him by this year’s deadline. If the Lakers decide to trade him next year or the year after than it might be too late. The Lakers would still be able to get a solid player but nothing compared to what they can get now.
Based on what happened this offseason, it seems like Gasol has a good enough value to bring in a top tier point guard or two key players like Luis Scola and Kevin Martin.
The Lakers should consider trading Pau Gasol right after his value shot back up after the Clippers game last night, where Gasol seemed to play really well for the first time this season, and before the Lakers travel on an eight-game road trip. Pau Gasol’s trade value is not going to get any better of the years and the Lakers should trade him as high as possible.
Why not sell your player for the highest possible value when it is obvious that his value is going down by the day?
His Decline in Production Under Coach Mike Brown
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The statistics will not show is as much the game tape will show it but Pau Gasol looks like he is lost in the Lakers new offense. New head coach Mike Brown has a much different offense than Pau Gasol’s former coach, Phil Jackson, had. Gasol is struggling to adjust to this new offense and it is hurting his production and the Lakers chances at winning.
Pau Gasol fit the triangle perfectly because the offense would run through him a lot, which made way for him to make shots from the perimeter. Gasol was given these opportunities last night against the Clippers and he made most of them. Unfortunately for Gasol’s case, Blake Griffin is not the cream of the crop when it comes to defense in the NBA—most of Gasol’s shots were uncontested.
Pau Gasol’s production has went down this year in scoring, 16.2 points per game, which is 2.7 points worse than his career average at 18.7 points per game—Gasol also averaged around the same in his first three years as a Laker under Phil Jackson’s coaching.
Trading Pau Gasol would allow the Lakers to bring someone in that would fit Mike Brown’s offense. The trade would also allow other players on the Lakers to get more involved in the offense. Which leads us to the next point.
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One player who would greatly benefit from the departure of Pau Gasol would be Andrew Bynum.
If Gasol were to be traded than it would mean for more touches for Bynum. Right now it seems like both of them may be able to get along in the offense but not by much. Allowing Bynum to play without Gasol would lead to less congestion in the paint, which would equal more production out of Bynum.
If you have seen a Laker game this year than you will notice that Bynum usually has to put up the ball between two or three defenders and it is because Gasol has attracted players to guard him down low.
Bynum has put up the best numbers of his career so far, 16.2 points and 12.7 rebounds per game, and is finally living up to the hype that he has been surrounded with his whole career. The offense needs to go through Bynum more and if the Lakers had a decent point guard to get the ball to him then his production would rise even more.
Bynum could possibly put up numbers like Dwight Howard in the Lakers offense if we was the solo big man.
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The most obvious of rumored trades does not involve Pau Gasol but it involves his teammate, Andrew Bynum. The Lakers should not pursue trading Bynum for Dwight Howard as much as they should pursue trading Pau Gasol for all the reasons listed in this article.
The most ideal trade for the Lakers to make is by trading Pau Gasol for Deron Williams, read here about recent rumors. This trade would finally add an elite point guard to the Lakers. In the Western Conference the Lakers need to face point guards like Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and Ty Lawson.
In the Eastern Conference the Lakers need to face Derrick Rose, Rajon Rondo and other problematic point guards. Deron Williams will end these problems for the Lakers and put an end to the success that point guards have for the Lakers.
This trade would also make life after Kobe an easy transition for Laker fans and management because Deron Williams is someone you can put a team around and find success. A combination of Williams an Bynum would be great to watch after Kobe decides to hang it up
Many of you will be reading this saying, “If Bynum gets injured than the Lakers are screwed if they make a trade involving Gasol.” Unfortunately if the Lakers do not make a trade they will not only be screwed for this year but screwed for the next couple of years. Kobe (33), Gasol (31), World Peace (33) and Derek Fisher (37) will be all be retired or decline in the next couple of years.
The most ideal trade for the Lakers to make is by trading Pau Gasol for Deron Williams. This trade would finally add an elite point guard to the Lakers. In the Western Conference, the Lakers need to face point guards like Chris Paul, Russell Westbrook and Ty Lawson.
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