Should The Lakers Trade Pau Gasol? Maybe, But There’s No Rush

Should The Lakers Trade Pau Gasol? Maybe, But There’s No Rush


Steve Nash and Pau GasolIt was only a matter of time before the rumors started swirling around Pau Gasol, and they’ve come as early as the preseason this year.

In a recent report from Fox Sports’ Sam Amico, it appears the Lakers are looking to trade Pau Gasol for a young, scoring point guard.

Just days earlier, Gasol expressed his desire to retire as a Laker but also said he’d be resistant to taking a significant pay cut next season — essentially following the lead of Kobe Bryant, who said something similar a few months back. (While Gasol won’t be offered anything close to the $19 million he’ll be paid this season by any team, he’s likely asserting that he won’t take significantly less money from the Lakers compared with his market value around the league.)

The timing of the trade rumors is unfortunate given the rejuvenated mind state the Spaniard had over the offseason following the departure of Dwight Howard. The Howard move guaranteed Pau the peace of mind regarding his role this season, which is essentially playing in the low post at the five as the Lakers’ second option behind Kobe Bryant.

It’s also unfortunate since one of the main reasons Steve Nash decided to come to the Lakers was the idea of playing alongside the highly intelligent, highly skilled, and highly unselfish Pau Gasol. The two have shown flashes of developing a strong offensive chemistry so far this preseason, and Gasol with Chris Kaman — both seven-footers who play a similar style of basketball — have also shown a promising ability to not only co-exist in the front court, but elevate each other’s respective games.

Head coach Mike D’Antoni has also seemingly been pleased with what Gasol has shown thus far, and seems generally excited to have the big man — whom he called the “best center in the NBA” recently — as the anchor of what he hopes to be a high-powered, run-and-fun offense.

Why Not To Trade Him

Last season, I was adamant that the Lakers shouldn’t trade Gasol. I wrote an article on how he was the Lakers’ best chance at winning ballgames due to his elite skill set, half-court ability, and size.

To sum up, no post player in the league — besides perhaps Tim Duncan — has the type of skill set that Pau Gasol possesses. He has a rare ability to shoot, face up, post up, utilize both hands, and pass the ball; Gasol’s play-making ability may actually be the best in the league for a big man.

Additionally, because of those skills, Gasol is able to pick apart defenses in the half-court, which is an essential asset to have in playoff type situations or intense, close games. Last season was tough given the Lakers’ collective age, but this season with some youth surrounding him, Pau’ presence could be the perfect match for the team.

Finally, while plenty of teams are going smaller and have been successful in doing so, size is always an advantage. When you have a guy on the low block as talented as Pau Gasol, it created problems for the opposition.

Why To Trade Him

Regardless of how fans, players, or even coaches feel about Pau Gasol, ultimately the decision is up to Lakers’ management in Jim Buss and Mitch Kupchak.

With the Lakers currently in a “restructuring” type of season, management is undoubtedly looking to the future and to the summer 0f 2014 — where they’ll have immense financial flexibility.

Gasol is under contract this season for approximately $19 million, but will be a free agent this summer. Certainly, this factor is weighing on the minds of Buss and Kupchak, along with Gasol’s recent comments. As stated above, Gasol will undoubtedly have to take a pay cut next season regardless of which team he plays for, but may be asked to take less money than other teams are offering to stay with the Lakers.

While Gasol may eventually change his stance on the pay cut to stay with the Lakers next season, he’ll still be 34-years-old. So, if the Lakers can truly get some valuable young talent for years to come, they may be best suited to pull the trigger on a trade.

Gasol’s expiring contract may be enticing to any team looking to clear cap space after the season, so a better deal could be made this season than, say, last season.

Next Page: The Breakdown & Practicing Patience

  • C*HarrisTHEboss

    Another stupid article.

  • hookedonnews

    This rumor sounds bogus to me, and there’s certainly no reason for the Lakers to be putting something like that out there. I thought the Lakers already had a young PG who can score (Farmar) to go with the Hall-of-Famer Nash who still has a lot left in the tank if you were watching the game in China. Gasol has looked good so far. If you get rid of him, I can’t imagine going for a PG in exchange unless you believe that Robert Sacre can step in and be the starting center. Stuff like this is not helpful. It tends to demoralize players and doesn’t help the team. I realize everyone wants to be the first to put something out there, but unless you know that this is true why add to the noise?

    • Paytc

      I have to agree with you for the most part. What some will do for attention :-) It’s not like the NBA is loaded with skilled 7 footers. I did think Gasol, for whatever reason (it could have been the trade rumors) last year did not play with championship desire until we were backed up facing elimination. We need to just let him focus on playing out his final year at a high level so it helps him secure another lucrative contract, and hopefully a Laker championship. IMO

  • vdogg

    this is getting so ridiculous. stop talking about trading pau already. he is in the last year of his deal and the team is going to be better than people think. moreover, pau looks good and is playing well. if you do trade him this year, who are you going to get — rondo? kyrie irving? brandon jennings? no, you’re not getting any one of those guys for pau. it’s pointless to talk about it. kill this noise already!!!

  • Daryl Peek

    There is no bigger defender of Pau than me on this site. Ask Jim213? LOL The rumors will continue to float fellas. I agree it’s tiresome but given were over the luxury tax and Pau is still our best trade chip, he will be shopped. I wont claim this or any other rumor is truth but it’s not so far fetched.

    I would hate to see the Spaniard traded but if Jimmy and Mitch can pull a deal that improves the team, we gotta embrace it. I was indifferent on the CP3 trade at first but that was a brilliant move if it would have gone through.

    • Suki Thind

      My sentiments exactly. I love Pau and have defended him relentlessly. I still will continue to do so, but like you said about the CP3 deal, sometimes you have to be realistic.

    • cj

      kobe is our best trade chip it just wont happen lol

      • Jim213

        Plain an simple no KB24 = no NEAR future contention possibilities for rings if management happens to fill in the right pieces.

        But with regards to Pau, it’ll depend on his early season play unless management puts together a three team trade that trades 3 players to alleviate the cap tax which would likely include Blake and Meeks.

        • Daryl Peek

          Trading Pau is the easiest way to fix the luxury tax problem we currently have but if we fare well as a team this year, I could see them keeping Pau and resigning him for a few more years. Especially if Kobe comes back strong and has any say about Pau.

          Jordan Hill is the most likely to be traded. Keep in mind MDA has very little use for Hill. Moving Hill & Blake coupled with Meeks can fix the luxury tax issue also.

          • Jim213

            As mentioned months back Meeks, Blake, and possibly Hill may be placed on the trade block. However, observe some solid players that may contribute to the team’s future depth. Farmar, X Henry, E Harris (needs more experience) and possibly Nick Young.

            However, time and experience will determine if they can develop into possible 3rd, 4th, and even 5th man players though there’s no doubt IMO that Farmar will likely be assuming a leadership role down the line.

        • cj

          i was making a joke lol. but a trade of deng and jimmy buttler might get the lakers up to trade kobe


    i say get rid of blake, sacre, and landry.
    i want farmar to take blakes spot on the roster, blake costs us ball games and over dribbles and cant be efficient and turnover prone.
    keep gasol but if a better point guard can be gained than go for it.
    farmar, nash, and one more good guard who doesnt turn it over and doesnt over dribble and can shoot 3’s than i am up for trading gasol, but keep him for now and get rid of blake, sacre, landry and darius odom.

  • NO

    stupid article

  • LakersHeatBeef

    Trading Pau will turn into a monopoly,then Steve Nash will be traded also since Steve Blake is struggling so bad and he is already on the cusp of turning 34 he will be dealt.Also Jordan Hill and Jodie Meeks might be included in packages since they have been inconsistent as Lakers.

    Then Kobe Bryant will get pissed of for the Lakers trading his buddy Pau Gasol and all hell will break loose.So if the Lakers want to avoid major conflict then just say NO.But for the long term it might work out in the best interest depending on who they get in return.I am guessing Tyreke Evans and Trey Burke are players the Lakers are considering in trades.

    Also Victor Oladipo and Kyle Lowry are probably on the radar also don’t rule out the possible pairing of the Gasol brothers in Memphis and in return the Lakers would get Mike Conley but if this about getting a scoring point guard i would look no further than TY Lawson he is the scoring point guard the Lakers should get IMO.

    Don’t forget Denver even if they trade TY Lawson for Pau Gasol they still have Nate Robinson,Andre Miller,Evan Fournier at point guard and they add Pau Gasol to play center with Kenneth Faried and Javale would back him up.

  • 3339

    the only way they trade Pau is if they get another superstar in return.

    • Suki Thind


  • Don Marco

    Trade him to get a yonger player that’s what we need