Before this season began, a lot of people had the Los Angeles Lakers and Miami Heat playing for the NBA Championship. The Lakers boasted two seven-footers that were supposed to make The Association quake in its boots, and the Heat had two of the top five superstars in the league right now. It seemed like an inevitable, destined showdown.
Of course, that’s why you play the games.
Fast forward to now. The Lakers got unceremoniously bounced out of the playoffs again this year, and the Heat look to be on the verge of following suit.
Sure, Miami could probably come back against the ancient Boston Celtics and ultimately make it to the NBA Finals, but there is no way they’ll beat an Oklahoma City Thunder team that’s firing on all cylinders right now. And seeing as it’s championship or bust for the Heat, anything less will be just as much of a failure for them as getting knocked out in the second round was for the Lakers.
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There are currently a lot of mixed opinions on what precisely Miami should do come year's end. Some are saying that, because of Chris Bosh’s injury, the team should be given a pass for their most recent failures. Others, however, are saying that two years of this mess is enough, and that Pat Riley should break up the South Beach Big Three in favor of a more workable roster.
While the topic of what should happen with the Heat is a very polarizing one, the topic of what should happen with the Lakers isn’t subject to the same debates. Everyone (including management) agrees that things need to change in Tinseltown; at this point, it’s just a matter of figuring out what specifically those changes will be.
During June 6’s episode of ESPN’s First Take, Screamin’ A. Smith came out and suggested what he perceived to be a solution to everyone’s problems. He recommended that the Lakers and Heat make a trade that would result in the following:
Lakers Get: Chris Bosh, Dwyane Wade
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Heat Get: Kobe Bryant, Pau Gasol
And then he mentioned that other pieces would have to be thrown in to make the numbers work.
On its face, this trade is absurd. The Lakers would never, ever trade Kobe Bryant under any circumstances (well, scratch that – not yet, at least), and the Heat would never swap out a younger All-NBA shooting guard like Wade for a much older one like Kobe. That was our initial reaction to the trade.
Once we thought about it a bit more, though, once we dug beneath the surface a bit...we realized this trade was even more absurd than we initially thought it was. Besides it not working in theory, it also doesn’t work financially.
Here is how it would break down, numbers-wise:
So, yeah, it fails on every level. The Heat would have to trade away everyone on a team that already has no one, just to bring in two guys who offer basically the same thing that they already have.
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