L.A. Lakers 2011: All We Need Is Love
Let me just get this out there before I actually start the article: Kevin Love is my favorite player in the NBA right now, so I may be a bit biased.
However, I do believe that Kevin Love would be a perfect fit for the Los Angeles Lakers, playing alongside Andrew Bynum. Love would be able to stretch the floor better than Pau can, and that could possibly open things up for Bynum.
Bynum was the man inside defensively, so the Lakers would really just be losing that polished post presence that Gasol brings—but, Gasol is 30 and Love is only 22. There is still plenty of time for Love to develop a mid-range game like Gasol, and he can only get better on the defensive side of the ball.
From what I have seen, Lakers fans are basically split on the issue. But why not trade Gasol while his value is still high and get rid of his enormous contract? Gasol is still the most skilled big man in the game, but he is getting old and maybe a pairing of him and Rubio in Minnesota would kick-start this lowly NBA franchise.
Don't get me wrong, without Gasol the Lakers and Kobe would not have won the two NBA championships, but what are the Lakers really losing by giving him up?
Skill—Gasol is the most skilled big man in the NBA, as I have stated before.
Experience—Gasol has been in three of the past four NBA Finals, and Love has no playoff experience.
Who woul benefit most from this trade?
Size—Gasol is 7'0" and Love is hovering around 6'9" or 6'10".
What are the Lakers gaining by taking Love?
Rebounding—Kevin Love is the best rebounder in the NBA and he will definitely be willing to crash the boards in LA.
Athleticism—Pau Gasol is just about as athletic as they come for big men, but I'm giving the advantage to Love because he is eight years younger than Gasol.
Three-Point Shooting—Love was one of the best three-point shooting forwards in the NBA and he will be able to stretch the floor in a way that Gasol couldn't.
Also, let's not forget that the only way the Lakers will take this trade is if they get the No. 2 pick in this Thursday's NBA Draft—and with that pick, they could get even younger; they could potentially pick up Derrick Williams from Arizona or Brandon Knight from Kentucky.
This trade would not only help the Lakers get younger and more athletic, but it would also potentially give them the best rebounder in the NBA and maybe a solid prospect at point guard for the future.
I believe that this trade would impact both teams in a positive way, and that both teams should close this deal soon.
All there is left for me to say is: All I need is Love in LA.
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