As the Los Angeles Lakers near the end of their season, they have the ability to control their own fate. Based on how this season turns out, there are a myriad of different routes the Lakers' front office can take going forward.
Despite Kobe Bryant's injury, the Lakers play a very winnable final game against the Houston Rockets. If they are able to defeat them, then the Utah Jazz won't be able to get any closer than a game behind the Lakers even if they win their next two.
With that being said, Dwight Howard and Pau Gasol have been coming into their own as of late. While both are superior talents, they had never seemed to click playing together throughout the season.
Since returning from his injuries, Gasol has been a different kind of animal.
While shooting 53.5 percent from the field in his last five games, Gasol has acted as both a facilitator and a scorer during the Lakers' recent resurgence.
As Gasol flourished so has Howard, and the twin-tower dynamic they wanted to establish since the beginning of the season has started to come into its own.
However, whether or not they'll be able to continue working on their chemistry in subsequent seasons is up for debate, as the Lakers may go in drastically different directions.