Earlier this morning it was reported by ESPN that the Los Angeles Lakers were talking to the Cleveland Cavaliers about a trade to send Andrew Bynum back to Los Angeles in exchange for Pau Gasol. In this deal, the Lakers would simply waive Bynum after acquiring him to save as much as $20 million and therefore starting the rebuilding process for the storied franchise.
Only a few hours later, another report has surfaced claiming that the Lakers want more for Gasol according to Mike Bresnahan of the L.A. Times:
But a person familiar with the situation downplayed the report, saying the Lakers would want more value for Gasol in a trade and, additionally, that it would be a stretch for the Lakers to reacquire Bynum, who is indefinitely suspended by the Cavaliers for conduct detrimental to the team.
As usual, it remains unclear what the Lakers intend to do with Gasol. All indications appear to be pointing to the two sides ultimately parting ways, in the off-season or via trade before the deadline on Feb. 20, but the reports of potential deals or trade discussions with other teams continue to be refuted.
Before the trade rumor surfaced about Bynum potentially making his way back to Los Angeles in exchange for Gasol, the Lakers had reportedly reached out to the Brooklyn Nets. The Lakers expressed interest in acquiring veteran center Brook Lopez for Gasol, but Brooklyn wasn’t interested in such a deal. Lopez ultimately went down with a season-ending foot injury shortly after talks with the Lakers had ended.
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