In a shocking turn of events, the Los Angeles Lakers shook the foundation of the NBA with a sign-and-trade for two-time MVP Steve Nash. The acquisition of their formal rival offers the Lakers their first legitimate point guard since Kobe Bryant joined the team in 1996.
Just don't think that the Lakers are ready for another title as is.
L.A. remains athletically inept and without a pure shooter on the perimeter. While Nash is one of the best spot-up shooters we've ever seen, he's hardly the answer on the perimeter, as he's always focused his attention on facilitating rather than scoring.
This leaves the Lakers with an uncomfortable situation, as they have very little money to bring in a very big presence. As Frank Isola of the New York Daily News reports, however, the Lakers may not be capitalizing that need; they may be adding another pair of old legs to their roster—39-year-old legs.
Grant Hill will either join Steve Nash and the Lakers or retire, a source close to the veteran forward told me.
— Frank Isola (@FisolaNYDN) July 5, 2012
While Grant Hill's veteran presence and everlasting craftiness on either end would benefit the Lakers, it's hard to imagine it pushing them anywhere closer to the title. Metta World Peace and Grant Hill both lack the lateral quickness necessary to handle a player such as Kevin Durant.
Kobe Bryant, meanwhile, remains the Lakers only true perimeter scorer. This brings the wear-and-tear on the aging Bryant to another level, should he continue to perform as the Lakers' best perimeter defender.
Grant Hill is one of the better players of our generation. He's a Hall of Famer for his college basketball days and would have been for his NBA performances had he remained healthy. He just isn't the right fit for the Lakers' unit.
Don't make this 2004. Adding veteran legs didn't help then, and it won't help now.
The Lakers must attempt to deal Ramon Sessions in a sign-and-trade for an athletic three. If not, they must add a consistent three-point shooter, as their inability to spread the floor and hit the big shots will be their ultimate undoing—unless Andrew Goudelock finally finds playing time, but let's be real.
Who believes Mike Brown is actually going to allow that to happen?