HOOPSWORLD.COM: By now, many of you have seen the video on the main-page in which I discussed the Los Angeles Lakers and GM Mitch Kupchak (I know because of all the e-mail I’ve received since it was posted at the beginning of the week).
And yes, I really do believe that Kupchak has done a pretty decent job.
And no, I haven’t been drinking.
I know it’s fashionable these days to blame Kupchak for all of the Lakers’ woes. He’s been setup to be the fall guy if the Lakers struggle this season, and he’s already being bashed by Laker fans for his inability to acquire a superstar this offseason. Although, don’t be surprised if Shawn Marion, who recently requested a trade, ends up in LA before all is said and done (more on that later).
First, I’m not sure fans understand just how hard it is to consummate a trade in today’s NBA. It’s not like Kupchak can just waive his magic wand and make a Kevin Garnett type player show up on the Staples Center hardwood in exchange for Kwame Brown, Sasha Vujacic, and a couple of headbands. It takes two to tango, and not only that, but salaries have to match, as well. Point is, it’s not easy to orchestrate a big trade in today’s NBA.
Moreover, with Garnett out of the picture, would it really make the Lakers better to move Lamar Odom and Andrew Bynum for a guy like Jermaine O’Neal? Look, you won’t run into a columnist who has more respect for O’Neal as a player and a person than I do, but moving Bynum in such a deal may not be the most prudent decision.