A new O'Neal in LA?

No, it's not Shaquille O'Neal. But Jermaine O'Neal is a pretty darn good player himself. The Indiana Pacers forward/center told reporters yesterday that he'd welcome a trade to the Lakers.

"It's time for me to move on," O'Neal said Sunday at Baron Davis' and Paul Pierce's annual L.A. Stars charity basketball game at USC's Galen Center. "And the Lakers are the team I want Indiana to trade me to."

O'Neal told SI.com's Arash Markazi that he's healthy for the first time in three years after undergoing knee surgery in April. He also said that he's been talking to Kobe Bryant in the offseason and criticized Pacers president Larry Bird for his rebuilding philosophy and trade negotiation tactics. O'Neal expressed additional interest in a trade to New Jersey.

O'Neal is an excellent consistent front-court player who would figure to complement Kobe Bryant fairly well. Any deal for him would require the Lakers to give up Lamar Odom. Then, if rumors and reports are true, Bird and Mitch Kupchak would need to cross an impasse. It's well-known that the Lakers are reluctant to give up Andrew Bynum, while earlier this summer it was reported that Bird wanted the Lakers to take on Troy Murphy's hefty contract.

An O'Neal-to-the-Lakers deal is certainly workable under the cap, and it can make sense for both teams. Kobe has stated that he wants to win now, and O'Neal has indicated that he may opt out of his deal next year. But in order for this deal to become a reality, both teams will need to compromise.

August 6, 2007 2:21 PM • Native Intelligence • Email the editor
 

© 2003-2014   •  About LA Observed  •  Contact the editor
LA Biz Observed
2:07 PM Sat | The funeral for Mark Lacter will be held Sunday, Nov. 24 at 12 noon at Hillside Memorial Park, 6001 W. Centinela Avenue, Los Angeles 90045. Reception to follow.
Native Intelligence
Phil Wallace | The Lakers front office has a chance to take a superstar in next month's NBA Draft. But if recent history is any guide, there's a strong possibility that they'll take a complete bust.
Gary Leonard | Take My Picture Gary Leonard appears weekly at LA Observed.
Bill Boyarsky
The best place to watch baseball in Los Angeles is not Dodger Stadium. It’s Jackie Robinson Stadium, the small, elegant home of the UCLA baseball Bruins. Unfortunately for the university, the ballpark occupies 10 acres of the 387-acre Veterans Administration health facility in West Los Angeles, land reserved for housing and treating veterans.
Jenny Burman
Before I lived in Echo Park, there was a tiny 1920s bungalow-cottage-standalone house on N. Occidental in Silver Lake. I...
Here in Malibu
We have weather moving through, a system that could have (but didn't) drop any rain here at the coast. But...