The Los Angeles Lakers are in the enviable position of being able to trade spare parts in order to add pieces that could potentially add depth to a roster that is loaded at the top.
But there are issues with the salary cap that will have to be addressed for the team to keep that core together for more than a year, when Howard hits free agency, which is where Steve Blake and Chris Duhon come into the mix.
According to Marc Stein of ESPN, the Lakers would be more than happy to just give at least one of those contracts away to a team willing to take it.
Yet sources with knowledge of the Lakers' thinking say that the team is already trying to create a backcourt opening, having made it clear to the rest of the league that Chris Duhon and Steve Blake are available via trade to any interested party willing to absorb one of those contracts.
As pretentious as this sounds, because whenever anyone talks about the Lakers it is about what they can do that the rest of the league can't, moving both players should be the top priority for them right now.
Blake and Duhon account for over $15.5 million (via HoopsHype.com) the next two seasons combined.
Duhon, 30, averaged 3.8 points and 2.4 assists in 63 games last season with Orlando. Blake, 32, was slightly better, averaging 5.2 points and 3.3 assists in 53 games with the Lakers in 2011.
Within that same report Stein also mentioned that the Lakers could possibly have interest in bringing back Derek Fisher, but they need to free up salary-cap space to do so.
If the Lakers are able to move both Duhon and Blake, they would be able to sign Fisher on a very cheap one-year deal that would give them a viable backup point guard, save them millions of dollars over the next two years and provide a little more wiggle room financially.
It is much easier to say the Lakers should move players than to actually do it, but we know that this franchise can be very convincing when it is desperate do something.
Moving Blake and Duhon, who are both capable backups, has to be all that concerns the Lakers right now.
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