It has certainly been a rollercoaster week for fans of the Los Angeles Lakers. The Chris Paul deal brought a combination of excitement mixed with nervousness after finding out that getting CP3 would cost two talented big men. Then, mixed emotions turned to a unified sense of rage at NBA commissioner David Stern when he killed the trade for reasons that still have not been fully explained. Now, an appeal is moot because Lamar Odom has been moved to the Dallas Mavericks. What could possibly happen next?
Not a great deal
Personally, I didn't think the Chris Paul deal was necessarily a huge win for the Lakers, so David Stern may have done them a favor. Would Paul and Kobe Bryant have instantly formed the best backcourt in the NBA? Probably. Would their styles have complimented each other and would Kobe routinely defer to the younger Paul? Uncertain. Would the Lakers suddenly be very thin up front? Absolutely. Chris Paul is an amazing talent, and it is a guard's league. However, giving up Odom and Pau Gasol was not necessarily a good move. Odom can be maddeningly inconsistent, but he is also an incredible talent and he does a lot of things that do not necessarily make the highlight reel. In addition, one bad playoff series does not change the fact that Pau Gasol is a versatile big man that would have been difficult to replace.
Not a great deal, Part II
The deal that sent Lamar Odom to Dallas is a bit of a head-scratcher. This deal has the feel of something that was done in order to set up something else, but if Dwight Howard does not appear, was it worth it? Again, Odom could drive people crazy at times, but recent words from Kobe Bryant show that his teammates appreciated him. I have a feeling that this deal might come back to hurt the Lakers in the future unless it leads to an even better transaction.
Something else in the works?
Is Dwight Howard coming to the Lakers? After all the drama in the NBA office, it is really hard to gauge what might happen. As mentioned, David Stern appears to have killed the Chris Paul deal just because he didn't like it on a philosophical level. Would he also kill a deal for Dwight Howard? Of course, there is always the possibility that Lakers management is thinking about a rebuild rather than a reload. That is something that many Lakers fans do not want to even consider.
The author grew up in Seattle and now lives in Los Angeles, where he waits patiently for the Sonics to return to the Pacific Northwest. In the meantime, he roots for the Clippers to become a winning franchise, and perhaps even the most popular team in their own city.
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