Very interesting tidbits. Got to love the logo!
Memphis Edge: The Griz and Lakers have been talking for some time. One of their initial discussions involved a deal that would have included Mike Miller and Hakim Warrick, and Lamar Odom. The Lakers are said to have declined.
Part of the motivation for the Gasol deal had to do with the discontent from fans. A large segment of the fan base (as fickle as they are) disliked Gasol, booed him and wanted the Griz to ship him at any cost. The team realized that, along with just 13 wins, having a franchise player (and highest paid player) that can’t draw at the ticket window would never work. People wouldn’t pay to see Gasol play. So part of the thinking is perhaps they can shop for one who can draw fans.
I’m hearing strong vibes that the Logo brokered this deal. No proof but where there is smoke, there’s a fire. Jerry West still has owner Mike Heisley and general manager Chris Wallace’s ears. Plus, West is very interested in having Lakers GM Mitch Kupchak succeed. Just my two cents.
After talking to several league executives, the Griz have pissed off the Western Conference with this deal. Elite West teams are said to be angry that the Griz just handed the Lakers an important piece in their quest to become a championship contender. Typically, All Stars are sent to the ‘other’ conference. Imagine how Atlanta and Chicago must feel right now. But those East teams weren’t offering cap room.