As a Lakers fan, well, perhaps, I should state, as a Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom fan, I was a bit weary of the Chris Paul trade. Yes, the addition of Paul would have added speed and athleticism to the aging Lakers roster, but at what cost? Yes, Gasol became Mr. Cellophane during the playoffs and Odom may have been distracted by the E! camera crew, but how exactly do you replace them? Gasol is/was the starting power forward and back up center while Odom was/is a jack of all trades and capable of playing at any position. Without Gasol & Odom, who starts at center when Andrew Bynum eventually gets injured during the season? Who’s the starting power forward? I felt the deal was like using a piece of gum to fill a hole in the sinking Titanic.
As for the rest of the deal, the Rockets would’ve gotten a solid big man in Gasol to replace Yao Ming and the Hornets would’ve probably benefited from having Kevin Martin, Luis Scola, and some draft picks to help rebuild.
Yet, David Stern canceled the deal and in a way, put a really awful and sour taste in my mouth. I’m struggling to understand what exactly the lock out and the subsequent agreement accomplished?
If David Stern killed this trade because he didn’t want players to dictate where they wanted to be traded, that’s absolutely bonkers. So, Chris Paul will most likely play out the 2011-12 season as a Hornet and at the end of the season, he’s free to sign whenever he wants and the Hornets get nothing in return. With the deal, it helps the Hornets rebuilds. Stern might’ve been upset with the Carmelo Anthony to the Knicks saga of last season, but that traded benefited both teams. The Nuggets had a great playoff run last season and the Knicks became a good team. This sets an extremely bad precedent from the future of the NBA. If a couple of owners object to a trade, what’s going to stop David Stern from nixing it again?
The NBA will never be the same again.