Lakers Trade Rumors: Latest Buzz on Pau Gasol’s Status for Next Season

The 2012-13 NBA season was supposed to play out like a dream for the Los Angeles Lakers. The team, which already boasted two of the game's best in Pau Gasol and Kobe Bryant, had managed to acquire two-time MVP Steve Nash and seven-time All-Star Dwight Howard, and appeared poised to challenge the Miami Heat for NBA supremacy. 

But it wasn't meant to be, at least not this season, and as a result, one of the Lakers' big four is likely to be out of town. And if general manager Mitch Kupchak can help it, it won't be Dwight Howard, as he told ESPN earlier this week that he's "hopeful" about D-12 returning.

Howard will probably take his time in coming to a decision, but in the meantime, the attention will turn toward Pau Gasol, and whether he'll return for his seventh season with the Lakers. 

In what was undoubtedly the most tumultuous season from both an individual and a team standpoint for Gasol, the four-time All-Star scored a career-low 13.7 points, but more importantly, Mike D'Antoni struggled to find a place for the big Spaniard in his offense. 

Now, with the Lakers reeling from their Round 1 sweep at the hands of the Spurs, Gasol's numbers in Hollywood appear to be numbered, especially if D'Antoni remains as coach. 

According to ESPN's Dave McMenamin, Gasol was forthright in saying that he's aware of the possible outcomes the summer could hold in store. 

From a financial perspective, the assumption was that the Lakers would try to trade his expiring deal or opt to use their one-time amnesty provision on the 12-year veteran. 

“(Kupchak) couldn’t really tell me, ‘Hey, thanks for everything you’ve done, it’s more likely you’re going to be gone,’ or no, ‘Don’t worry about it, you’re going to stay here. We’re going to make it happen,’” Gasol said. “Which is to be expect...

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