Did you feel that? Maybe it was another earthquake here in San Francisco, but I’m pretty sure I just felt the ground shake. It’s either that, or the Lakers are about to pull off the biggest blockbuster since Carmelo Anthony landed in New York. According to Adrian Wojnarowski of Yahoo! Sports, the Hornets are near a deal to send Chris Paul to the Lakers for Pau Gasol and Lamar Odom, and have started to inform teams that it’s happening.
It was first reported that the deal would include Andrew Bynum instead of Gasol heading to New Orleans with Odom, but apparently the Lakers have managed to keep him out of it. For now.
As analysts have noted, this deal would make more sense if it was Paul and Emeka Okafor for Odom and Gasol, but there is no word that other players are involved. After trying this deal in ESPN.com’s NBA Trade Machine, it fails. You’d have to cut around $7 million from the Hornets’ incoming trade value to make this work. If you throw in Okafor or former Laker swingman Trevor Ariza, the trade is successful.
Update: According to Woj, it appears the Hornets and Lakers are going to include a third team – the Houston Rockets – to make the salaries work out. This deal would send Paul to Los Angeles, Gasol to Houston, and Odom, Kevin Martin and Luis Scola to New Orleans.
Interesting enough, this deal doesn’t work in the NBA Trade Machine either. You’d have to cut almost $8.5 million from the Hornets’ incoming trade value to make this successful, as Paul is slated to make $16.4 million this season and Gasol is scheduled to earn $18.7 million. Other names besides Okafor and Ariza that could be involved include Goran Dragic.
And as others have pointed out, the Lakers still have Bynum, parts and cash to offer Orlando for Dwight Howard.
Update: It’s been reported that the Hornets will receive Odom, Scola, Martin, Dragic and the Knicks’ 2012 first-round pick (via Houston).
We’ll have updates as soon as we hear more.
What are your initial thoughts on this potential trade?
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