He wasn’t worth a first-round pick back at the trade deadline, although in hindsight he may have very well been able to push Phoenix into the playoffs. But now that he is set to be a free agent in July, Pau Gasol is well worth a long hard look by the Suns.
One of the areas of concern that Phoenix would like to address in the offseason is improving their post scoring. Markieff Morris improved in that area, but Gasol adds a whole different dimension. He averaged 17.4 points and 9.2 rebounds in which he played 62 games for the Lakers this past season.
Gasol will be 34 in July. He made $19.3 million last season and won’t get close to that on a new deal considering his age and injury history.
The Suns currently are expected to have roughly $20 million in cap space. A portion of that will end up going to Eric Bledsoe when they sign him or match another team’s offer. Just a guess here, but maybe you can get Gasol for $20 million over two years.
Having a veteran, proven center in Gasol makes Phoenix a legitimate playoff team next year, adds veteran championship experience and doesn’t cost you anything in terms of players or draft picks.
It also allows Miles Plumlee to play the backup center spot, and Plumlee has proven very capable of starting should Gasol have to miss any time.
So in a nutshell, Gasol to the Suns makes a lot of sense for both sides.