Mar 14, 2014; San Antonio, TX, USA; Los Angeles Lakers center Pau Gasol (16) is defended by San Antonio Spurs forward Tim Duncan (left) during the first half at AT&T Center. Mandatory Credit: Soobum Im-USA TODAY Sports

NBA Rumors: Pau Gasol not expected to return to Los Angeles Lakers

The Los Angeles Lakers thought about dealing power forward Pau Gasol at the trade deadline and although both the Charlotte Hornets (then-Bobcats) and Phoenix Suns both appeared to be very interested, the Lakers ultimately held on to him.

Now, the Lakers could regret not picking up an asset or two for Gasol because he is set to become an unrestricted free agent.

Lakers’ star Kobe Bryant is a big fan of Gasol and the Lakers would obviously like to hold on to him, but they may not be willing to give him the multi-year deal he desires as they try to add another star (or two) and get younger.

Chuck Myron of Hoops Rumors doesn’t believe Gasol will remain with the Lakers.

Comment From Pau Gasol
People need to realize that Kobe LOVES LOVES LOVES me and I will be a Laker until I retire. Enough with all the rumors.

Kobe loves you, but do Mitch Kupchak and Jim Buss? And even though the last time we saw you and Phil Jackson together, he was poking his finger in your chest after the Mavs swept the Lakers in 2011, I think Phil Jackson loves you, too, Pau. I can’t picture you back in purple-and-gold next season.

The Hornets and Suns as well as the Dallas Mavericks and San Antonio Spurs are all expected to be players for Gasol.

Gasol averaged 17.4 points, 9.7 rebounds 3.4 assists and 1.5 blocks per game last season. He shot 48.0% from the field, 28.6% from beyond the arc and 73.6% from the free throw line.

Tags: Los Angeles Lakers NBA Rumors Pau Gasol

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