With the 2013-14 NBA season quickly becoming a disaster for the Los Angeles Lakers, the storied franchise is seriously considering cutting ties with two-time NBA champion Pau Gasol. Ironically enough, the Lakers may be considering making a deal for Andrew Bynum in exchange for Gasol according to Brian Windhorst and Ramona Shelburne of ESPN.com on Dec. 31:
The Los Angeles Lakers and Cleveland Cavaliers have had discussions about a trade that would involve Pau Gasol and Andrew Bynum, league sources told ESPN.com.
After missing the last two games due to an upper respiratory infection, Gasol has apparently fallen out of favor with the Lakers organization and quite possibly some of his teammates as well. Although a deal may come to fruition sending Gasol to the Cavs, Bynum will likely be waived immediately via Windhorst and Shelburne:
By trading Gasol in a package for Bynum and then waiving Bynum, the injury-ravaged Lakers could save more than $20 million in salary and luxury taxes, which could help them maintain financial flexibility heading into the next few summers. A Gasol-Bynum trade would have to include at least one other player to make the deal work under league rules, and perhaps other assets from Cleveland.
With less than two months remaining before the NBA trade deadline on Feb. 20, the Lakers will likely continue to gauge trade interest in Gasol around the league. A deal for Bynum might be ideal for the Lakers with the team able to save a considerable amount of money by waiving the veteran center, but it remains to be seen if this trade can get done or if another scenario involving Gasol with a different team turns out to be more appealing.
At this point in time, it seems clear the Lakers are finally ready to move on without Gasol and possibly start the rebuilding process in the upcoming NBA off-season.
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