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
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.