With a January 7 deadline to trade center Andrew Bynum, the Cleveland Cavaliers and Los Angeles Lakers continue to have discussions about a possible trade centering around Pau Gasol. The Lakers and Cavaliers have had talks in the past few weeks, but earlier this week, multiple reports suggested talks have stalled.
However, with motivation from both sides to get a deal done, Jason Lloyd of Ohio.com reports that talks will be ongoing until the deadline:
As for the trade with the Lakers over Pau Gasol, these two teams are going to dig in and take this to Tuesday’s deadline.
Gasol, 33, is in the final year of his contract and looks like he’s done in a Laker uniform regardless at the end of the season. The clashing with head coach Mike D’Antoni and coming under fire from his teammates about not playing with an upper respiratory infection have accelerated the process of a break-up between the two sides.
The Lakers want to deal Gasol in order to save $20-$25 million in luxury tax money once they waive Bynum, who’s been suspended indefinitely by the Cavaliers. However, knowing that they wouldn’t be getting anything for Gasol but cap relief, the Lakers are insistent upon getting another piece back from the Cavaliers.
Meanwhile, the Cavaliers have the Tuesday deadline because they don’t want to pay the second-half of the guaranteed money on Bynum’s $12.25 million salary this season. The piece the Lakers want is either in the form of a first-round draft pick or a player that can help build for the future and they might be targeting a European player:
The Lakers keep insisting on an asset (I’ve heard Sergey Karasev’s name mentioned) or a first-round pick and the Cavs aren’t interested in giving away assets.
Karasev is a 20-year-old forward from Russia who the Cavaliers drafted with the 19th pick in the 2013 draft. In 14 games this season, he’s averaging 2.2 points and one rebound before being assigned to the Canton Charge of the NBA D-League.
With a strict Tuesday deadline, it’ll be interesting to see if the Cavaliers include another piece as the Lakers might be their best bet to get a deal done.
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