UPDATE (07/08/12, 8:48pm PST): Andrew Bynum has been unwilling to sign a contract extension and has made it known that he is willing to test the free agency market after the 2012-2013 season. This has pretty much killed the deal between Orlando and Los Angeles.
UPDATE (07/06/12, 10:05 am PST): Apparently the Lakers are NOT demanding Dwight Howard sign an extension. They believe they can convince him to stay if they can compete for a championship. Oh, boy.
Rumors of an impending trade between the Orlando Magic and Los Angeles Lakers are burning up the internet this morning.
The prize for the Lakers is, of course, Dwight Howard.
Supposedly, the framework for the blockbuster trade is in place. The Lakers will send Andrew Bynum to Orlando and get Howard in return.
The deal is contingent, however, on Bynum signing an extension with Orlando. No word on weather the Lakers are demanding the same from Howard.
The addition of Howard, along with recently acquired Steve Nash, would make the Lakers favorites to win a championship next season.
Reports are that Howard has already spoken to Kobe Bryant and Nash. The trade is supposed to be finalized over the weekend.
(Will be updating this story throughout the day. Stay tuned)
With the NBA Draft only a few days away the Lakers trade rumors are flying fast and furious.
The latest ones involve Pau Gasol and Metta World Peace. It’s no secret that the Lakers are trying to move Gasol. He’s been the fall guy for the Lakers’ post-season woes the last two seasons.
According to reports Los Angeles is trying to trade Gasol to the Washington Wizards for the #3 pick in this year’s draft. That seems a little farfetched since the Wizards have just signed Nene and Emeka Okafor and it doesn’t make a whole lot of sense to have three big men with three big contracts. But you never know.
The next rumor involves trading Metta World Peace for a late first-round pick. This one has a slightly better chance of happening than the Pau trade. Teams may look at MWP’s late season play (minus the elbow to James Harden’s head) and think he may be worth it. The only snag may be the fact that MWP is owed nearly $15 million over the next two years.
Apparently the Lakers have their eye on Kentucky point guard Marquis Teague. They definitely need a point guard but I’m not sure they need a rookie point guard. No matter how good he is. (Is it already time to say goodbye to Ramon Sessions?)
Right now the Lakers do not have a first round pick. Kobe Bryant is getting older by the day. Jim Buss has not proven he can run the team as well as his father. To say the Lakers are desperate is an understatement.
The Lakers need to do something big in order to remain relevant in the Western Conference. OKC will only get better. Young teams like Memphis, Denver and Utah are nipping at their heels. Their window for winning another championship with the roster is closing fast, if it isn’t closed already.
Something has to be done.
Expect an avalanche of rumors to be reported over the next couple of days and expect Draft Night to be pretty wild.
The Lakers are on the clock. In more ways than one.