The Credits: "The Spanish Prisoner"

Pau Gasol

With the trade deadline fast approaching on Thursday, teams all over the League are looking to improve their squads. All basketball eyes are on Orlando as they deal with the Dwight Howard situation. Will the Magic hold off the suitors and gamble with Howard leaving for nothing in the summer, or will they trade him and begin the reconstruction process? Lots of different scenarios could happen League-wide in the next 72 hours, which makes for exciting and nervous times.

As for things out in the West, the Lakers have their own share of questions that need answers. Caught squarely in the fire of all of this has been Pau Gasol, who has been mentioned all season long in trade scenarios since the nixed CP3 deal. The Spaniard has taken most of the rumors in stride, save for a few games and moments where he didn't look like the Gasol of old. With the backing of Kobe Bryant and the rest of the team, Pau Gasol has quietly played great consistent ball these past couple of games, reminding us once again, that two 7-footers are better than one.

Barring an unforeseen major-move by the Lakers, it appears the FO is more inclined for small moves that benefit the Big3 and cut salary off the books. Once such move is the rumored Felton for Blake deal. Ken Berger reports:

Rival executives believe the Blazers are interested in exploring a swap of Felton to the Lakers for Steve Blake, with L.A. sending another piece to make the salaries match and compensate the Blazers for getting the better player and future cost savings in the deal. The Portland coaching staff and front office are comfortable with Blake, who could provide a calming presence as the team battles through numerous distractions.

For now, expect similar reports of Lakers looking for small moves, but don't completely discount the Franchise's ability to pull of the blockbuster trade, as history can attest to that. Let's hope the Lakers remember they have a game tonight against the Memphis Grizzlies, the first of a back-to-back, and set the trade talk on the back burner.

↓ Much more after the jump ↓

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