According to Yahoo! Sports, Chris Paul is headed to the Lakers. The proposed deal will send Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom to the Hornets in exchange for CP3. The Houston Rockets could also be involved. The details will soon be hashed out, but it appears phase one of the Lakers makeover is complete. With Andrew Bynum not a part of the reported trade, it would stand to reason that he could be a centerpiece for another trade that would bring Dwight Howard to L.A.
Assuming all the information is accurate, the first (only?) trade raises an interesting point. As I Am a GM shared with us, Suns forward Jared Dudley provided his opinion on the rumors via his Twitter account Thursday. Does he have a point?
“I’m hearing all this chatter about CP3 to the Lakers and Pau to (Houston),” Dudley wrote. “I’m telling you now if they do that and don’t get Howard then (they’re) worse.”
If the Paul trade is indeed what Wojnarowski says it is, common sense would tell you the Lakers intend to use Bynum as a facilitator for adding Howard. But what if it doesn’t happen? If for some reason the Lakers are unable to pull off a trade for Superman, did they just make themselves worse?
L.A. has obviously improved their backcourt, but they would need to add a role player or two to compensate for their lack of size. In fact, even if they trade for Howard they will still be smaller than they were last season, and front court depth has been one of their strengths. Obviously exchanging Gasol, Odom, and Bynum for Paul and Howard yields more talent, but the Lakers are giving up an awful lot of size and depth in their front court.
Given Bynum’s injury history and inconsistency, the Lakers are now in a position where they have to find a way to acquire Howard. If they can, they will immediately become the favorite to win it all this season and possibly for years to come — size or no size.