After Pau Gasol’s return to the floor on Tuesday’s night win over the Charlotte Bobcats, the Los Angeles Lakers were able to win their third straight game and continue their climb out of a gigantic hole they’ve dug over the course of the first 26 games of the 2012-13 NBA regular season.
Even though Gasol played well at times against the Bobcats, the Spaniard is clearly still out of place in terms of finding his role under new head coach Mike D’Antoni. Despite that being the case, the Lakers will continue to wait for the return of Steve Nash to the lineup before making a final decision on whether or not to trade Gasol.
In the meantime, the Lakers’ front office is reportedly shopping a handful of other players in their search for a solid backup for Nash in the backcourt. There’s been talk of the team possibly considering signing Delonte West, but there’s been no movement on that front since the rumor began to circulate last week.
Apparently, the Lakers may be dangling one of their better bench players on the trade market with Jordan Hill possibly on the block along with Devin Ebanks and rookie Darius Johnson-Odom according to Steve Kyler of Hoopsworld.com:
Gasol isn’t the only player the Lakers have explored moving, sources near the situation say the Lakers would like to open up a roster spot to add a new player or two so don’t be surprised if guys like Jordan Hill, Devin Ebanks, Darius Morris or Darius Johnson-Odom are moved in exchange for a backup point guard or a second round draft pick in order to open a spot for the Lakers to sign one.
The fact that Ebanks, Morris and Johnson-Odom are possibly on the trading block for the Lakers isn’t much of a surprise, but Hill potentially being dealt is a bit of a head-scratcher with the recently re-signed forward being the team’s best option off the bench behind Gasol and Dwight Howard.
Re-signing Hill was one of the Lakers’ top priorities in the off-season along with acquiring Nash, Howard, Antawn Jamison and Jodie Meeks. Hill, like Gasol, has struggled to find his place in D’Antoni’s system, but has been solid for the Lakers ever since he was acquired by the team back in March for Derek Fisher.
Although Hill is a valuable asset to the Lakers’ bench, the front office appears to be exploring all options to help turn around this team that had so much promise heading into this season.