It's becoming very apparent that the Los Angeles Lakers need to make some changes before next season.
Could Pau Gasol be the one that leaves?
Gasol averaged 13 points and 10 rebounds in the playoffs, but has also been widely criticized for his lack of aggressiveness during that time.
Kobe Bryant, after Game 4, made his frustration no secret:
"Pau has got to be more assertive; he's got to be more aggressive. He's looking to swing the ball too much. He just has to shoot it."
Los Angeles just hired Mike Brown last summer to be their new coach and Andrew Bynum looks to be the new star once Kobe Bryant retires.
It looks like Gasol will be the odd man out.
OC Register's Kevin Ding explains why Gasol and the Lakers will have to part ways this summer:
"It's abundantly clear now that the triangle offense is long gone that Lakers can use some perimeter pizzazz and tenacity a lot more than they can use Gasol's versatility-turned-uncertainty. But even if Gasol averages 50 points and 30 rebounds in the Olympics, the Lakers have a further complication in that they are trying to reduce their payroll in the wake of the post-lockout luxury-tax penalties and revenue sharing that have changed their landscape. Because of that, trading Gasol for a great player who has another massive contract isn't what they really want, either. The Lakers might have to go that route and figure out some money things later, as they were willing to do with their aborted deal for Chris Paul before the season."
The question is, who will want to go after a player on the downswing with a really big contract?
Teams that could use Gasol would be the Houston Rockets and Orlando Magic. If Orlando wants to get rid of Dwight Howard, then maybe he could be the piece they could use in their "new era."
Houston was willing to give up Kevin Martin, Luis Scola, and Goran Dragic last summer in the vetoed Chris Paul trade. If Los Angeles could even get close to that kind of deal, they better pull the trigger.
Evan Sidery is a beat writer for FootBasket. He is a fan of the Colts and Pacers. You can see more about him by following him on Twitter.