Move the Los Angeles Lakers Need to Make in the Off-Season

How To Fix The Lakers

5/22/12 in NBA   |   natsaar   |   160 respect

May 21, 2012; Oklahoma City, OK, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward Pau Gasol (16) handles the ball while being guarded by Oklahoma City Thunder forward Serge Ibaka (9) during the second half in game five of the Western Conference semifinals of the 2012 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena.  Mandatory Credit: Mark D. Smith-US PRESSWIREThere are clearly problems with the Los Angeles Lakers. Last night, these all became more than apparent as they were knocked out of the playoffs by the Oklahoma City Thunder. Let’s break down the current roster.

Kobe Bryant seems to be the only man on the team who wants to play basketball, and can do so fairly consistently. I always think he should be in the MVP conversation because the Lakers are not “the Lakers” without Bryant.

Pau Gasol is unreliable and only comes to play basketball on some nights. He doesn’t look to drive to the basket, but rather settles for low-percentage jumpers.

Metta World Peace is, as Kobe has stated, the one guy who comes to play every night. He’s a force on defense but his offensive consistency is lacking. Still though, he is the Lakers second most valuable player night in and night out.

Andrew Bynum has had his problems all season, but these could be overlooked until last night. Bynum’s numbers were too awful to repeat, and he showed a complete lack of enthusiasm. It was as if he was already on vacation.

Then there’s Sessions. He started out so strong when the Lakers first acquired him, but showed in the playoffs that he needs some serious grooming.

The bench, for the most part is garbage. Blake had a few clutch shots, but was mostly horrible. Barnes is inconsistent at best. Hill is very promising and he should stick around on the team (especially since his contract isn't up). McRoberts, Murphy, and Ebanks were not much help in the playoffs and seemed to disappear.

I’m of the belief that Goudelock should have gotten a lot more playoff time than he did, but we’ll see what happens next season.

It’s pretty simple. The Lakers need to blow this team up. I think some interesting options are to not exercise Bynum’s team option and go for a cheaper, younger version of Bynum. We all saw what JaVale McGee is capable of in the playoffs, and he’d be a nice fit. Or the Lakers can keep Bynum and use him to lure some trades.

The bench for the most part has got to go. Barnes, Ebanks and Murphy all have expiring contracts, and only Ebanks possibly warranted a new one with the Lake Show. Blake has two more years, as do Gasol and World Peace. These are both large contracts that lock up a lot of cap space.

The Lakers should use their amnesty clause this year on a player, and it’s highly debatable which it should be. Gasol has more trade value than World Peace, but not by much. It’s unlikely that Blake will get traded, but then again, the Lakers were able to unload Luke Walton so never say never.

Oh, and there’s the matter of the Portland Trailblazers trying to woo GM Mitch Kupchak as well. It will be a busy off-season for sure, and the Lakers organization will undoubtedly put together another team that will take them to the playoffs and hopefully win.
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5/26/12   |   austints413

Bynum for Howard definitely. Then hopefully they can lure in Deron Williams since he's a free agent this off season

5/24/12   |   natsaar   |   160 respect

I like Bynum for Howard the more I think about it. I hated it last year, but Bynum's listless look in Game 5 killed all hope I had for him. I just want guys who want to play, and who want to win. At least they'll lose looking like the Bulls.

5/23/12   |   richard_cranium   |   17638 respect

Dan_B wrote:
Bynum for Dwight Howard?

The media has made it sound like Howard doesn't want to play in LA. If I was the Magic, why would I want to get rid of a crybaby that shows up to play nightly for a crybaby that shows up to play when he wants to. Had Bynum played hard every game, the Lakers probably would have beat the Thunder, at the very least they would be playing game 6 tonight.

5/23/12   |   Dan_B   |   1066 respect

Bynum for Dwight Howard?

5/23/12   |   kobe_lova   |   59474 respect

kantwistaye wrote:
I keep Bynum, Pau, and Artest, but look to move Bynum.  See if Orlando is interested in him first, and then move on from there.

I was about to argue with you, but I've changed my mind. Maybe later.

5/23/12   |   kantwistaye   |   4201 respect

I keep Bynum, Pau, and Artest, but look to move Bynum.  See if Orlando is interested in him first, and then move on from there.

5/22/12   |   richard_cranium   |   17638 respect

(Edited by richard_cranium)