Pau Gasol had a pretty tumultuous season this year. While it wasn’t a failure of a campaign by any means, it wasn’t a memorable one, especially with the subtle distance growing between Kobe Bryant and Pau.
And Pau knows he’s on the trading block. It’s likely he gets shipped out of L.A. way before the 2012-13 season starts, because this isn’t the year 2010 anymore. According to reports, he sees this and apparently, he’d like to land in Chicago. From Bulls.com:
The interesting part, according to Lakers’ insiders, is Gasol would like to play for the Bulls. And what you hardly need any sources for is to see how he and Bryant basically can’t stand one another. It was no secret around L.A. what all those post series comments were about. “We got to be committed to each other,” said Ron Artest. “This year we wasn’t as committed collectively, and that hurt us a lot.” Said Bynum: “We just weren’t doing it together.”
Well, can you blame Pau Gasol?
Gasol was largely underutilized in Mike Brown’s offensive system, and with Kobe constantly riding his tail (and the riding being far more aggressive in recent seasons; get your mind out of the gutter, jerk), it’s becoming a pain to stay dressed in Purple and Gold. Likewise, the fan-base is upset with Pau, despite the fact that most Lakers fans seem to love him to death.
The other side of this equation is, what the hell will we get from Chicago that’ll be of use to us? Perhaps Luol Deng, since we need a solid offensive and athletic wing, while maintaining defense at the 3, but this team still desperately needs a point guard, and John Lucas just won’t cut it. The only other piece that might work is Omer Asik, and something tells me that Pau Gasol isn’t enough for Chicago to part ways with him (since most deals with Chicago fall dead at the mention of Asik).
Don’t rule out a three-team trade, though, especially with Mitch Kupchak being the craftiest GM in the league when it comes to acquisitions off of trades. It’s obvious that Chicago would love this (he’d fit so damn well and compliments Derrick Rose perfectly), but the Lakers expect to get a serious haul for a player that’s obviously worthy of being a second option on a championship team.
We’ll see how this plays out. While everyone’s upset that L.A. got bumped early in the playoffs again, there’s no doubt that we all get giddy over major offseason moves.