Pau Gasol Trade Would Signal Needed White Flag for LA Lakers’ Season

Time for the Los Angeles Lakers to call it a season.

More than half of the 2013-14 campaign remains, but it's already clear the depleted Lakers aren't going anywhere special. And instead of prolonging the inevitable or feigning immediate purpose, they should fly their purple and gold flag at half mast while prominently waving a white one.

That starts with trading Pau Gasol once and for all.

According to ESPN's Brian Windhorst and Ramona Shelburne, the Lakers have held discussions with the Cleveland Cavaliers about a potential Andrew Bynum-Gasol swap:

By trading Gasol in a package for Bynum and then waiving Bynum, the injury-ravaged Lakers could save more than $20 million in salary and luxury taxes, which could help them maintain financial flexibility heading into the next few summers. A Gasol-Bynum trade would have to include at least one other player to make the deal work under league rules, and perhaps other assets from Cleveland.

Gasol-related rumors are nothing new. The NBA's regular season wouldn't feel right if the Lakers weren't passively dangling Gasol in multiple trade proposals. But each time the Lakers appear ready to deal their four-time All-Star, talks abruptly cease. That, or commissioner David Stern gets involved.

This time should be different. This time the Lakers should actually move on.

This time they should actually surrender to reality.


Where Are They Going?

Spoiler: Nowhere.

It's been known for awhile the Lakers value Gasol more than the market does. Not to say they've been loyal, because let's face it, they haven't. Gasol's name has crept into the rumor mill like clockwork since 2011.

But every time a possible deal imploded or rumors were disproved, we got the sense Los Angeles balked at moving him for lack of palatable offers. 

Long before the Chris Paul trade fel...

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