The front office of the L.A. Lakers has mastered the art of the mixed message. One week they’re proclaiming no major moves and the next they’re moving a major part of their future for a player – Steve Nash– whose best days are in the past.
That’s why you can understand why Pau Gasol sounds so unsure of his future in purple and gold. The Spaniard has been the target of constant trade rumor for two years running and that’s not going to slow down anytime soon. Not with the Lakers looking to add more than just a past-his-prime point guard to a roster that still clings to delusional championship hopes.
Gasol, like everyman that’s paid to play for the best franchise in basketball must be, is hungry for another ring. He’d love to help and add another banner to the Staples Center collection but he knows that’s not promised and told the L.A. Times as much.
“We all know by now that there are no guarantees in this business. I want to win another ring and I cannot see any other place better than the Lakers, and LA, my city, to do so.”
As recently as the eve of the NBA Draft there were rumors of the Atlanta Hawks offering Josh Smith for Pau and the T-Wolves looking to package Derrick Williams as part of a potential Gasol trade. Then there is the never ending Dwight Howard saga that had Gasol going anywhere from Houston to Orlando.
During the season Kobe Bryant become so irritated with all the Gasol speculation that he demanded the front office to either handle their business or get off the pot.
For now Pau is a Laker. That could change in a matter of hours or it could remain that way for the rest of his playing days. Neither would be a surprise. After all, Gasol already has been traded once by the Lakers only to be forced back thanks to the iron fist of David Stern. So truthfully no scenario is surprising anymore.