Trading Pau Gasol Not the Cure-All Solution for L.A. Lakers to Correct Course

Trading Pau Gasol won't do much for the Los Angeles Lakers. Not much at all.

When it came to potentially acquiring Chris Paul, Dwight Howard or even Rajon Rondo, there was a case to be made that the Lakers had plenty of reasons to ship out the declining big man.

Now, however, what would the reasoning behind exploring such a move be? That he's too old? Too slow? Too expensive? 

Well, I've got news for crowd that wants Gasol ousted: None of the above is true.

I'll admit that at 32, it's unlikely the towering forward begins setting career highs in every measurable category. But that doesn't mean he's too old. Even in the midst of what was considered a horrible 2011-12 campaign, the aging Gasol still managed to post 17.4 points and 10.4 rebounds on 50.1 percent shooting from the floor.

How many young guns can lay claim to such a feat? Very few.

Better yet, can Josh Smith—the player many critics would deal Gasol for in a heartbeat—say he did the same? His 18.8 points per game last season say yes, but his 9.6 rebounds and 45.8 percent shooting from the field say otherwise.

How about Gasol being too slow?

Mike D'Antoni would be the first to admit the power forward isn't the most athletic of bigs, but he was also one of the first to acknowledge (via Janis Carr of The Orange County Register) that there is a place for him in the coach's system:

First of all, when Dwight goes out, he's a great center. You cannot find a center to do what he does for 14 minutes. That is super positive, D'Antoni said. And with Dwight (on the floor), he (Gasol) shoots the ball all the way out to the 3(-point arc). He's another 7-footer who can guard the rim and he's extremely smart.

So let's put an end to all the "too slow" business now. Gasol is one of the most mobile bigs in the game. If D'Antoni didn't feel he could succeed within a run-and-gun attack, ...

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