The big trade seems about to go down, and the Lakers didn't have to cough up Pau Gasol. Dwight Howard heads to LA (along with Chris Duhon and Earl Clark) with Andrew Bynum heading to Philly along with the Magic's Saginaw-born Jason Richardson (he went to my dad's alma mater of Arthur Hill High and my MBA alma mater of MSU).
Denver gets Andre Iguodala.
The Tragic get Arron Afflalo and Al Harrington from the Nuggets, Nikola Vucevic and recent draftee Moe Harkless from Philly, first round picks from the Lakers, Denver and Philly, two cheesesteaks and a fish taco.
The trade seems to make sense for each club except possilbly Denver. Afflalo leaving leaves a void at the shooting guard spot, but one could see Iguodala play the two on defence and slide more inside on offense and let Danilo Gallinari, who seems to be 6-10 with the soul of a guy 6-4, roam the perimiter.
Orlando gets very young, but has a solid nuculus to work with. Lots of good starters but no alpha dogs and cap room out the wazoo.
The Lakers just upped the ante in the west if everyone stays healthy. You have one of the older backcourts in recent memory in Kobe and Steve Nash, Pau Gasol is still in his prime but has some miles on the odometer and Howard is rehabbing a bad back. If they're all good to go, the Lakers and the Thunder will be on a collision course in the Western half of the bracket.