NBA Trade Speculation: Why Chris Paul to LA Lakers is Not What Worried Owners

Chris Paul was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers via a three-team trade involving the Hornets, Lakers and Rockets before the league stepped in. The deal did not go through due to several owners' protests to the league regarding the trade. This has left many writers and sports fans perplexed, as the Hornets were receiving a lot of talent in return for Paul's services.

Lamar Odom was being dealt to the Hornets, while Paul Gasol was being shipped to Houston, leaving Andrew Bynum as the lone post option for the Lakers. This would transform the Lakers' biggest advantage into a potential serious weakness when Bynum inevitably gets hurt. The tandem of Paul and Kobe Bryant would be very formidable, but the the fact Paul was going to the Lakers was the reason owners revolted, thus causing Stern to reject the trade.

Paul to the Lakers does not make the Lakers any stronger of a contender than they were before due to losing both Gasol and Odom, who were vital pieces to the Lakers' success. The problem with the trade is by getting rid of the contracts of Odom ($8.9 million) and Gasol($18.7 million) totaling nearly $28 million while only adding the $16.3 million of Paul's contract would give the Lakers some cap relief (

The combination of Paul and Kobe is dangerous, but no more than Kobe, Gasol and Odom. What the deal would do is make the Lakers potential players in next year's free agency, when Dwight Howard could potentially be joining them. Paul and Bryant alone may or may not have made the Lakers that much better of a team, but throw Howard into the mix and, barring injury, you might as well write the Lakers in to represent the West in the finals until the day Kobe retires.

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