The first substantial move has been made by the Los Angeles Lakers with GM Mitch Kupchak and company pulling the trigger on a blockbuster trade to bring in Steve Nash from the Phoenix Suns via sign-and-trade. Immediately after making the deal that sent shockwaves throughout the NBA, the Lakers signed Nash to a three-year deal worth $27 million.
Now that the ink has dried on the new contract, the debate over whether or not the Lakers gave up too much has begun. With Los Angeles sending four draft picks to Phoenix, the Suns’ front office were content with making the deal after being reluctant to send Nash to a division rival.
The result of the Lakers sending the picks to the Suns may backfire on the storied NBA franchise as it will be hard to rebuild without acquiring young talent in the future after Kobe Bryant and Nash call it a career. Despite that being the case, the Lakers believed this was the right move and potentially the missing piece to the championship puzzle in Los Angeles.
Another part of the blockbuster trade for Nash that has been overlooked is how the Lakers used to the trade exception received by the Dallas Mavericks in the deal for Lamar Odom. Apparently, the exception worth $8.9 million was enough to absorb Nash.
In yet another brilliant move by Kupchak, the Lakers were able to use to exception that was set to expire on Dec. 11 and gave up only draft picks to land a two-time NBA MVP. There was much debate over whether or not the team would be able to use the exception and what they might receive in return. It’s safe to say that no better deal could’ve been made using the exception.
It remains to be seen how much basketball Nash has left in him at 38 years-old, and if he truly is the missing piece to the puzzle, but the Lakers are arguably the best team in the league at making risky moves that result in hanging championship banners in rafters at Staples Center.