Tracy McGrady or Shannon Brown? Which Player Fits The Lakers’ Best?

Matt Barnes' decision to join the Toronto Raptors means yet another prospect the Los Angeles Lakers may have been interested in signing has now been taken off the free agency board.

There was little chance the Lakers were ever truly in the running for Barnes' services, but since the free agency signing period is a time for speculation, many felt he could have been a viable option for Los Angeles.

Tracy McGrady of the New York Knicks is still seen as a potential prospect, and he has become the primary choice for Lakers fans anxious for management to make one final move.

If the Lakers were to sign McGrady it would likely involve a trade, and one of the pieces could be Shannon Brown — but would McGrady be worth what the Lakers lose in Brown's potential?

A healthy McGrady provides the Lakers with a long, versatile player who is comfortable attacking the rim and playing on the perimeter, and he could serve as a secondary ball-handler as well.

The only thing is McGrady's health is more of a question mark than Andrew Bynum's, and to lose Brown for a player whose health is a major concern is a foolish proposition.

Brown may not have the fundamental talent of McGrady, but he is younger, athletic, and has provided the Lakers with an energetic spark playing off the bench.

Brown will never have the numbers or respect McGrady has earned throughout his playing career, but he is still young enough to grow into his game, and injuries have not been as much of a factor in his career.

If Brown can learn some discipline, he has an opportunity to be the type of perimeter defender McGrady never was, and the offense McGrady may provide is not as essential as some may claim.

It's always nice to have another scorer, but the Lakers' roster is filled with players who can score, and Ron Artest's numbers are likely to rise from a full season of playing in the triangle...

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