For the last two years now Pau Gasol has been rumored to be on the trading block. At one point he was traded until Communist Stern vetoed a deal that would have sent the Spaniard to Houston.
Taking the lead of part-time owner Jim “Trust Fund” Buss the Lakers have neither confirmed nor denied that Gasol is out there for the taking.
First we’re led to believe that the team won’t make any major moves then they turn around and trade away all the bullets they had in their Dwight Howard gun to acquire Steve Nash. And it seems like every other day there is a report of some new team coming forward with an offer for Gasol.
So disgusted by the silence of the front office on the matter was Kobe Bryant that he called out Mitch Kupchak and the rest of the organization to either “make a deal or tell Pau he’s here to stay.”
Now it would appear Andrew Bynum is starting to get some of that same indifference from the front office.
With the Lakers having unloaded a large portion of their future to acquire Nash there isn’t much left in the arsenal to throw at Orlando in exchange for the indecisive diva that is Howard. Of course all along it has been reported that the Magic were more interested in Bynum than Gasol as part of a package.
Once again all is quiet on the Lakers front as not a soul has come forward to either deny or confirm there is any talk of Bynum being on the block. However that hasn’t stopped Andrew from supposedly putting together a short list of teams he’s willing to sign an extension with should he be dealt.
On Andrew’s shortlist for places of employment are Cleveland and Dallas with no mention of Orlando.
Is this just a leverage play by Bynum as he takes a page from the Howard playbook? Or is he serious about wanting to play in Cleveland should the opportunity present itself?
We don’t really know for sure but the real question is what the heck does Bynum see in Cleveland that the rest of the hoops world doesn’t? That’s a question left to be pondered for another day.
For now it would appear that Drew is getting some of the Gasol treatment as his future with the Lakers looks a little less clear. Not too long ago Jim Buss made it clear that Bynum was a building block of the future. Apparently the Lakers’ front office is divided on the Bynum building project. Maybe enough voices of dissension have convinced Trust Fund to reconsider his stance.
Or maybe Jim Buss is that last man holding onto the Bynum. Since this is his team then he has the final say so on who comes and who goes. So perhaps nothing has changed in the Bynum school of thought. But that can’t ease Bynum’s angst at the notion of being trade bait. Not after seeing how quickly Lamar Odom was moved and certainly not after seeing Gasol suck it up after being traded, untraded and then rumored to be traded all year.
At some point someone in the front office has got to speak up and let these men known where they stand. The last thing the Lakers need is another season of uncertainty.