Pau Gasol Rumors: Rockets Should Pass on Overpriced Lakers Star

Luis BatlleContributor IJune 28, 2012

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 19:  Pau Gasol #16 of the Los Angeles Lakers dunks the ball in front of Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder in the first quarter in Game Four of the Western Conference Semifinals in the 2012 NBA Playoffs on May 19 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Stephen Dunn/Getty Images)
Stephen Dunn/Getty Images

Lakers power forward Pau Gasol is an All-Star talent, but one that would make an outright dreadful fit with the Houston Rockets.

According to ESPN NBA sportswriter Chris Broussard, the Rockets are reportedly no longer interested in pursuing the two-time title winner.

Sources insist Houston no longer interested in trading for Pau Gasol.

— Chris Broussard (@Chris_Broussard) June 28, 2012

Gasol has championship experience and was one of the key reasons the Lakers made three consecutive NBA Finals appearances 2008-2010. Yet with the team's youth, three first-round draft picks and other needs in the rotation, reeling in Gasol is not the answer.

These are the three reasons why the Rockets must avoid Gasol at all costs.


Houston Has Picks No. 12, 16 and 18 in the NBA Draft

After dealing Chase Budinger to the Minnesota Timberwolves the Rockets now have three first-round draft picks, all of which are top 20 selections.

Six of the team's 10 players currently on the roster are 24 years of age or younger. It is evident that the Rockets are looking to rebuild and restructure this team and would do themselves an injustice by trading any of these picks for Pau Gasol.

Whether it's Ohio State's Jared Sullinger or Illinois center Leonard Meyers, keeping these selections would undoubtedly be cheaper, allow Houston to bring in loads of young talent and further advance the rebuilding process as a result.


Luis Scola is the Worthwhile Choice at PF

LOS ANGELES, CA - APRIL 06:  Luis Scola #4 of the Houston Rockets spins free from Paul Gasol #16 of the Los Angeles Lakers during a 112-107 Rocets win at Staples Center on April 6, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledge
Harry How/Getty Images

Rockets forward Luis Scola is as overlooked a talent in the NBA. At 6'9'', 245 pounds, Scola boasts size and a plethora of offensive skill.

Last season, Scola averaged 15.5 points and 6.5 rebounds per game and played in all 66 games for the team. He has missed just eight games in his five years with the team and produces quality numbers. 

Gasol, on the other hand, has missed 35 games over the last five years. He averaged 17.4 points and 10.4 rebounds last season, numbers that are by no means worth the $9.6 million more he will make than Scola in the 2012-13 season ($19 million).


Rockets Need Help At Center, Not at Power Forward

The Rockets would be better served trying to draft players at the center position, as Luis Scola provides plenty of production at the power forward spot.

With Goran Dragic and Kyle Lowry at PG, Courtney Lee and Kevin Martin at SG, Chandler Parsons at SF and Luis Scola at PF, the real question is at the center position.

Acquiring a top-notch PF that makes more than double the money Scola does is an unnecessary and potentially harmful move for the team's future. Gasol has certainly passed his prime in the league, and does not fill the void in the Rockets' lineup.