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Last year, NBA commisioner David Stern blocked a huge deal that would have revitalized the Lakers, giving them a young, playmaker at point guard in Chris Paul. The result, Paul winds up playing for that other team in LA (I'll address them by name if they can remain relevant); the Lakers look stale and dried up; and LeBron gets his first title with a team in great position to repeat.
Enter summer 2012. The Lakers are aging, and acquiring Steve Nash doesn't help that, but he will still be one of the most exciting players in the NBA when the regular season--which will be a full 82 games this time--begins. General manager Mitch Kupchak still needs a homerun, a dominant post presence that he can pair with Kobe...like Shaq. Or how about the new Superman? Dwight Howard.
In the NBA's biggest offseason move, a four-team, eight-player trade proposal, which has been sent to the league for ratification, will send the three-time NBA Defensive Player of the year to Los Angeles (the teams involved are the Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers, Denver Nuggets, and Orlando Magic).
Just when Bron Bron thought he'd be coasting to championship numbers two, three, and seven; a reincarnation of the Showtime Lakers from the 80's now stands in the way (no, I have not forgotten about OKC). You have Kobe Bryant, one of the top five basketball players ever, running the floor with the best center in the game and one of the world's most prolific passers facilitating the whole thing...oh, by the way, Pau Gasol is still there.
According to Marc Stein of ESPN, the Nuggets will receive Andre Iguodala, Philly will get Andrew Bynum and Jason Richardson, and the Magic will acquire Arron Afflalo, Al Harrington, Nikola Vucevic and "a lottery protected first-round pick" from each of the three other teams.
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