Lakers Trade Rumors: Sign-and-Trade for Deron Williams Doesn’t Have a Chance

The Los Angeles Lakers never had a chance to sign superstar point guard Deron Williams outright, but it appears the organization's chances at a sign-and-trade acquisition aren't much better, according to ESPN's Marc Stein:

The Los Angeles Lakers, likewise have continued to express interest in a sign-and-trade package built around Pau Gasol for Williams, sources say, despite the Nets' longstanding insistence that they have no interest in Gasol and would only consider such a move if they were getting back All-Star center Andrew Bynum, whom the Lakers have not made available.

As much as we'd all like to think there were some way to bring a floor general of D-Will's caliber to a ready-made contender like the Lakers, general manager Mitch Kupchak can't realistically believe the Brooklyn Nets would prefer the remainder of Gasol's contract to cap space.

Gasol has two years remaining on his contract, and he'll earn just over $38 million for his trouble.

That's a steep price to pay for anyone in this new age of league-wide frugality, but it's especially high for a 31-year-old who never looked his best this season. Of course, his play may have had more to do the threat of trade looming over him, but no one really wants to find out for that kind of money.

Whether the Nets hold on to some cap space in pursuit of other top-tiered talent or ultimately prevail in their attempts to land the perpetually disaffected Dwight Howard, Gasol doesn't fit into the plans.

What's worse, the Lakers have precious few assets that could sweeten such a deal. 

Such is business with a top-heavy roster built around three core pieces. Moving those pieces isn't easy without a reservoir of supplementary talent to include in talks.

If the Nets were in fact intrigued by the possibility of getting Andrew Bynum instead, the plot obviously thickens. Bynum's value ...

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