1. Trading For Dwight Howard: August, 2012: 1967 was The Summer of Love, 1997 was The Summer of George and 2012 should be remembered as The Summer of Mitch. A month after acquiring former MVP Steve Nash from the Phoenix Suns, Kupchak traded for Dwight Howard, sending Andrew Bynum to the Philadelphia 76ers.
It may seem dicey having the Howard trade as the best Kupchak transaction, considering he hasn’t played one game. But with Howard, the Lakers not only have a player they can benefit from now, but they also have a player they can potentially build around when Kobe, Pau and Nash ride into the sunset.
Just landing Nash or Howard would have been deemed a successful off-season for Kupchak and the rest of the front office. The fact they landed both players is truly incredible. Especially when one considers they gave up such little in the process.
The Lakers now have a “Big Four” consisting of: Nash, Howard, Kobe and Pau, arguably one of the best starting lineups of all-time. There have been plenty of games and championships won on paper. The Lakers now must live up the lofty expectations that have been put into place.