The NBA landscape has changed significantly since last we mused on the possible destinations for Gasol back in November. Teams have surprised us with stunning success in the past three months, while a few have undergone huge remodeling movements. The assets that were there in November have been shifted around, with some needs fulfilled, some newly created and some simply reassigned. Either way, in that time frame, we at SS&R have debated what’s a reasonable return for Pau and if indeed it’s actually time to trade him, or if indeed keeping him is the best result we could hope for.
In November, I wrote my seventeenth installment in the seemingly interminable “Where could Pau Gasol get traded” series. Here’s what’s changed since then:
- I wrote that the Charlotte Bobcats, Phoenix Suns, Utah Jazz, Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics and Orlando Magic weren’t a match because those teams would be too busy rebuilding to want a high-priced veteran like Gasol. Here we are at the deadline and both the Suns and Bobcats are hanging at the bottom of their respective playoff brackets.
- The Raptors and Sacramento Kings were on the list of potential trade destinations, but with the import of Rudy Gay, the Kings have ruled themselves out of the mix.
- Milwaukee Bucks were an interesting landing spot for Pau, but with single-digit wins, I doubt they’d send any assets considering that even in the East, it’s damn near impossible for them to make the postseason.
- The Chicago Bulls made it a point to dump salary with the trade of Luol Deng. So then, why would they bring on Pau for more money than their longtime small forward?
- The Cleveland Cavaliers gave up a huge asset in the Andrew Bynum-Deng deal. Looking at their roster–and more importantly place in the standings–I don’t see them putting together another trade that would cost them even more assets on what looks like a lost season.
So who’s left?