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Evilmav2
02-17-2006, 11:45 PM
All I can say about this is: Please, please, please let this happen. The entertainment value that the spectacle of Kobe and Franchise trying to co-exist in the same backcourt would provide to greater NBA fandom is almost unimaginable...

http://espn-att.starwave.com/i/magazine/new/francis_katrina.jpg
Lakers show interest in Francis

Brian Schmitz | Sentinel Staff Writer
Posted February 17, 2006, 6:33 PM EST

HOUSTON -- Steve-O in the same backcourt with Kobe?

Add the Los Angeles Lakers to the list of possible suitors for Orlando Magic guard Steve Francis.

The Lakers are "aggressively" pursuing a trade that would send forward Lamar Odom to the Magic for Francis in a multiplayer deal, NBA sources told the Orlando Sentinel today.

Odom, a 6-foot-10, 230-pound forward, is an all-around player lost in Kobe Bryant's immense shadow with the Lakers. He was acquired in that megadeal involving Shaquille O'Neal and the Miami Heat.

Odom, who is averaging 13.9 points and 9.2 rebounds, has four more years remaining in a contract worth about $51 million.

Francis, who has three more years and about $48 million left on his deal, is in Houston, where he has a home and is attending the festivities involving the NBA All-Star Weekend.

Francis' agent, Jeff Fried, said today that the Magic haven't informed him that a trade was pending. The trade deadline is Thursday.

"There's no change in Steve's situation that I'm aware of," he said.

Asked whether Francis was resigned to being traded, Fried said, "No."

Fried continued, "Steve is focused on playing basketball. He just wants to play basketball and have fun playing."

The Magic appear to be in a rebuilding mold with the recent trade with the Detroit Pistons, focusing on getting younger and building around 20-year-old Dwight Howard. The Magic acquired forward Darko Milicic, 21, and point guard Carlos Arroyo, 26, from the Pistons for Kevlin Cato and a conditional first-round draft pick.

Odom is 26 while Francis turns 29 on Tuesday.

The Lakers aren't the only team interested in Francis.

The Houston Rockets -- Francis' former team -- have picked up interest in the past few days to make a "dramatic move" with the Magic.

The Rockets traded Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato to the Magic in the summer of 2004 for Francis, Juwan Howard, Tyronn Lue and Reece Gaines. It is not clear which players the Magic would take back in returning Francis to Houston, although they could be looking for players with expiring, cap-friendly contracts.

The Seattle SuperSonics also have called about Francis, and might be offering point guard Luke Ridnour as part of a deal, the source said. Other teams rumored to be linked to Francis are the New York Knicks and the Denver Nuggets.

The Knicks might be able to offer the best package of young players such as Jamal Crawford, former Florida Gator Davis Lee, Trevor Ariza and Nate Robinson.

The Nuggets, according to various reports, would send forward Nene' and point guard Earl Watson for Francis. They also might be trying to trade forward Kenyon Martin.

Brian Schmitz can be reached at bschmitz@orlandosentinel.com

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/sports/basketball/magic/orl-bk-spt-francis021706,0,7953079.story?coll=orl-magic

Dtownsfinest
02-17-2006, 11:53 PM
I wouldn't do it. Not for Odom. Maybe adding Franchise with Odom and Kobe could be something but Franchise is not the guy you want for Odom. I'd like to believe that Odom can get a serviceable #2 option to play alongside Kobe. Who that guy is I don't know. Its hard to determine Odom's trade value. I see him as a guy who still can potentially be a consistent all star in this league but he has some years on him so maybe teams feel he's probably peaked.

MFFL
02-18-2006, 12:09 AM
Apparently the author thought Francis was traded for himself. I know he has a big ego but...

The Rockets traded Francis, Cuttino Mobley and Kelvin Cato to the Magic in the summer of 2004 for Francis, Juwan Howard, Tyronn Lue and Reece Gaines.

Evilmav2
02-18-2006, 12:12 AM
I wouldn't do it. Not for Odom. Maybe adding Franchise with Odom and Kobe could be something but Franchise is not the guy you want for Odom. I'd like to believe that Odom can get a serviceable #2 option to play alongside Kobe. Who that guy is I don't know. Its hard to determine Odom's trade value. I see him as a guy who still can potentially be a consistent all star in this league but he has some years on him so maybe teams feel he's probably peaked.

This makes me wonder if Odom might quietly be demanding a trade. It wouldn't surprise me if Odom has taken all of the trade speculation about him in the local press (particularly when the Lakers were trying to get Artest) pretty hard, and I'd also guess that the multi-skilled forward has to be smart enough to know that if he stays in LA for the next couple of seasons watching the Kobe show, he is not going to have a gatoraid-flavored slurpee's chance in hell of commanding a max or near-max deal when he becomes a free agent in three years time.

My bet is that there might well be some behind the scenes stuff going on between Odom, Kupchak, Buss, Jackson & co., and consequently, Laker's management may be choosing to accomodate Odom's silently voiced desire to be traded now, rather than next Summer, principally because the Lakers are in the midst of a playoff push, and the aquisition of somebody like a motivated Francis might help them take the 7th or 8th spot in the playoffs, and thus add at least a salve to Kobe and Jax's respective egos and reputations (both are inordinately proud men who would probably rather die than be subjected to abuse and ridicule by the national press after failing to make the playoffs- a situation that would only get worse if the Lakers stunk again next season)...

EDIT: Also, that was a darned good catch on that Sentinel writer's error, MFFL. That's just embarassing...

alby
02-18-2006, 02:51 AM
Kobe Bryant makes Odom worse.

Lamar is such a talent, what a waste. He would own up in Orlando imo.

bernardos70
02-18-2006, 02:56 AM
There goes more playing time slipping away from Darko before he even gets a chance.

orangedays
02-18-2006, 11:30 AM
The Lakers are in need of some sort of interior presence while Odom is a 6-10 perimeter player (Mihm just don't cut it). I think the Lakers (in addition to possibly chasing the Franchise) might go after someone like Boozer? Or possibly Nene. I agree with Evilmav that Odom is probably very unhappy with his current situation and that it is in the Lakers' best interest to get rid of him now rather than let Kobe continue to suck the soul and lifeblood out of the poor guy.

Hitman
02-18-2006, 06:28 PM
There goes more playing time slipping away from Darko before he even gets a chance.


Darko will get as much playing time as he can stand in Orlando.

Bank on it.

dude1394
02-18-2006, 06:42 PM
Poor darko...Beat someone out dude.

kg_veteran
02-18-2006, 09:08 PM
Darko will get as much playing time as he can stand in Orlando.

Bank on it.

No doubt. They will give him every opportunity to shine. If Milicic pans out and the Magic could acquire Odom for Francis, I'd have to say that's a pretty darn solid core (Howard, Odom, Nelson, Milicic). In fact, if things went well, couldn't this team make the playoffs in the East?

Howard - Battie
Milicic - Turkoglu
Odom - Hill
Stevenson - ?
Nelson - Arroyo

EricaLubarsky
02-18-2006, 09:13 PM
thats an underdog team, but they could defintely make a push for the playoffs

jayC
02-19-2006, 12:59 AM
If the worst GM in the league is Isiah Mitch has to be right behind him. Butler for Brown has been a horrible trade. Really Odom for Shaq was a terrible trade. Maybe not as bad know but the big fella is still the best center in the league. Odom isn't a viable second banna.

The Lakers should trade Odom for an expiring contract. In two years it will be a huge free agent class.