NBA Trade Speculation: Should the Lakers Scrap This Season and Deal Steve Nash?

The Los Angeles Lakers have one contract on the books for next season, and it belongs to 39-year-old Steve Nash—who's slated to make $9.7 million.

But what if the Lakers could wipe that off the table as well? What if they're so far out of the playoff hunt by the time the trade deadline comes around that they think about shipping Nash out?

That kind of fresh start might be exactly what the Lakers need. And while having only $9.7 million against the cap is basically that, it's still not quite that nice, round $0.

That would give team management the freedom to go in literally any direction it chooses. L.A. could throw the kitchen sink at LeBron James (thought he's not likely to take it). It could make a play for Carmelo Anthony, whose wife is already in show business. Or it could try to grow organically like the San Antonio Spurs, OKC Thunder or Utah Jazz—building around whomever it lands in the star-studded 2014 draft lottery.

And no matter which one of those paths the team ends up taking, it should still have the money to be able to re-sign Kobe Bryant for the last few years of his career as well (whether he'd be down for a complete restart right now is an entirely different topic).

Regardless of how Kobe feels or what kind of trade value Nash has, I don't think there are many people who would argue that the Lakers don't need to try something. At least shake it up.

To think that this core will compete for an NBA championship now or in the future is beyond hopeful, bordering on delusional.

Kobe and Pau Gasol were a great combo when they first joined forces, but they've been surpassed by a number of competitors in the last five-and-a-half years. They're not LeBron and Dwyane Wade, or Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook—not even close. 

The time to go in a completely different direction is now, because the opportunity is here.


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