Topic Of Debate: Due to the emergence of Jordan Hill this season, the Lakers will be placed in a tough position once the 2014 free agency period commences: picking between the fan favorite in Pau Gasol, or the young big man in Jordan Hill.
Context: Though it might be too early to make such an assumption, the sudden success of Jordan Hill presents a new dilemma for the Lakers front office. It’s been noted that they intend to have as much cap space as possible in the 2014 and 2015 off-seasons in order to sign star-level talent, but what’s been kept under the radar is how much of that space will be used to round out the roster with current pieces they might want to retain.
We expect Kobe Bryant to re-sign and take a pay-cut, as he is going to be the main draw for other big free agents (A.K.A. Carmelo Anthony) to come and play for the Lakers. Initially, those same sentiments were also felt toward Pau, but with Hill’s stunning play after receiving more minutes, the Lakers might have to make a decision between the two as early as the all-star break.
Something is going to have to give. Because of Hill’s growth, the Lakers will have to make a decision between the two players if they plan on having enough cap space to bring in multiple stars to win another championship in the near future.
Verdict: We took this poll question to Twitter to get the fans take on the idea and where they stood on the concept of a tanking
I presented the poll question:
Hey Laker fans, would you let Pau Gasol go in order to preserve more money to re-sign Jordan Hill in the 2014 off-season? #LakersDebate
— Ry (@JustRyCole) November 20, 2013
Here are some responses:
As far as Kobe is concerned, important for him to understand that keeping Gasol and his desired salary does NOT help him get the 6th ring — Shane Young (@YoungNBA) November 20, 2013
Choosing between players is a very sensitive discussion, especially when both players have a legitimate case to stay.
Barring some injury or huge decline in production, the Lakers should expect Jordan Hill to be a key component in the success of their team. He’s developed his game to the point where he has cemented himself as a starting big man in the NBA. Right now the Lakers are paying Hill $3.6-million dollars in the final year of his contract, and his worth is surely to at least double that when he hits free agency in 2014 being that he is one of the few big men available in this upcoming off-season.
Pau Gasol is a Lakers legend, having contributed to back-to-back championships in 2009 and 2010. He has a great rapport with fans, and has made it known that he intends to retire in a Laker uniform. He surely is worth more than a veterans minimum that the Lakers would like him to take, and will look to get as much money as he can.
Both maintain value that the Lakers cant afford to lose for nothing!
Does the front office enter negotiations with Hill and try to extend him now? Do they attempt to trade he or Gasol to a contender for a first round pick? These are questions that we can assume the front office is asking themselves as this season continues to develop.
What should they do? Who do they pick?
What’s your take?
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