I don't know what's more shocking: The Spoiler To End All Spoilers for the fifth season of The Wire that I've watched multiple times in the past 45 minutes, or the fact that the Lakers have just acquired an All-Star caliber big man from Memphis for a guy that was lustily booed by his home crowd two weeks ago. I'm gonna go with the latter, since the former had already been hinted at. It was almost a state of denial on my part that I wasn't fully expecting it. But I digress.
In a colossal move that seemingly came from out of nowhere, the Memphis Grizzlies have traded F/C Pau Gasol and a 2010 second-round pick to the Lakers for C Kwame Brown, rookie G Javaris Crittenton, G Aaron McKie and the rights to Gasol's younger brother, C Marc, and first-round picks in 2008 and 2010. McKie was not on an NBA roster, but his rights were still owned by Los Angeles, the team he had most recently played for. He was signed earlier today today to make the deal's salary cap considerations feasible. The Grizz get cap relief - the remainder of Kwame's contract, $9.1 million this season, comes off the books after the season. The Lakers get the inside track on the 2008 title, as far as I see it - Gasol is a gifted post scorer that will fill in quite nicely in Andrew Bynum's absence. Suddenly, the next six weeks don't look so bleak for Lakers fans. And come playoff time, the Lakers will have a supremely talented, mammoth frontline - 6-10 Lamar Odom, 7-0 Pau Gasol, 7-0 Andrew Bynum - that no one is going to be able to match up with. No one. This past summer, Kobe was bitching about not having enough support. Nine month's later, he's on potentialy the most formidable team in basketball. Go figure.
That sound you hear? It's the rest of the NBA, trembling in their boots.