If Dwight Howard and Mike D’Antoni are still in town after the season, Pau Gasol says he might just have to call it quits with the Lakers, according to the Los Angeles Times:
“If this coach stays and Dwight Howard remains with the Lakers,” I asked, “what about you?”
“It would be hard for me to deal with another season knowing the facts you just mentioned,” said Gasol, 32 and with one year remaining on his contract.
“It’s a possibility,” he said, “yes.”
He will not request a trade before this month’s deadline, he said, although he knows there is interest from other teams for a starting center and he will be returning to the bench soon.
It’d be sad for Gasol’s time in Los Angeles to have such a bitter ending, but one could hardly blame him if by the end of the year he’s still being used off the bench and isn’t finishing games for the Lakers.
At the end of the day, this is a business. Gasol was already traded by the Lakers for Chris Paul, which reminds us: there’s no loyalty in sports.
Why would Gasol want to hang around town to play for a guy who makes comments like this:
D’Antoni offered a way for Gasol to get over the disappointment of getting shuffled in and out of the Lakers’ starting lineup.
“Pay him $19 million. I think that should help,” D’Antoni said, smiling.
However, the off-season is still a long way off and a number of things could change the outcome of this story: the Lakers could make the playoffs or miss it, they could retain Dwight or lose him, and they could even end up firing D’Antoni.
As usual, we’ll just have to wait this one out.