Why Deron Williams, Not Dwight Howard, Should Be Offseason Focus for L.A. Lakers

If Los Angeles Lakers general manager Mitch Kupchak is serious about making a major move to improve the team for the 2013 season, there should really be one immediate name on his list.

That name is Deron Williams.

In fact, it's Williams and not Dwight Howard who should be the focus of the Lakers' entire offseason.

First of all, Williams has indicated that he would be open to a sign-and-trade deal to the Lakers if he chooses not to sign with the Nets, ProBasketballTalk's Kurt Helin reported last week.

Howard has offered up no indication that he would be willing to sign an extension in Los Angeles, so he presents a much greater risk.

Simply look what each player brings to the Lakers in their current form.

The Lakers can't win without a legit floor general. While Ramon Sessions was a nice upgrade from the Derek Fisher and Steve Blake combination, he's also a guy that won't be bring a championship to Lakerland any time soon.

To acquire Williams, the Lakers would have to include at least Pau Gasol in a deal to make things work out salary-wise.

But the Lakers can win with a core three of Williams, Kobe Bryant and Andrew Bynum.

However, if Kupchak targets Howard and keeps Gasol, he will almost certainly have to include Bynum in a trade. A core three of Bryant, Gasol and Howard leaves the Lakers in the same position they were in this year.

They would be long and could dominate on the block, but without an upgrade, the chances of improving over the second round playoff exit they've had in back-to-back seasons is very slim.

However, adding that elite point guard provides an entirely different dimension to this team. 

Williams is not only a facilitator but a crafty scorer as well. Add him to Kobe's scoring and the size of Bynum, and the Lakers instantly become a better team.

For that reason and that reason alone, it sho...

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