NBA Los Angeles Lakers

NBA Rumors: Why the Los Angeles Lakers Should Trade Kobe Bryant

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Will I think it will happen? No.

However, in today’s NBA, anything is possible. We saw LeBron James leave his hometown team for less money to play with his best friend, Dwyane Wade, and the Miami Heat. Dwight Howard single handedly chased out his coach Stan Van Gundy, and then ended up leaving the Orlando Magic and was traded to the Los Angeles Lakers. Veterans are constantly moving around in pursuit of one final shot at a championship.

I know it is hard to picture Kobe Bryant in a different uniform than the purple and gold. However, it is not completely out of the realm of possibility.

The Lakers are currently are 9-13, and are in 12th place in the Western Conference. Steve Nash is 39-years-old and has missed most of the season with a leg injury, and pointing to his absence as the cause of LA’s struggles is ridiculous. The Lakers have Bryant, Howard, and Pau Gasol. There is no way that they should be losing to the Cleveland Cavaliers, Sacramento Kings, Orlando Magic, and the Utah Jazz twice.

It is time for the Lakers to hit the panic button. If they haven’t figured this out through the first 22 games of 2012-13 it is time for a change. What is that change you might ask?

Trade Bryant.

I want to make the case for trading Bryant, the Black Mamba, the future Hall-of-Famer. His team is 1-10 when he scores 30+ points, and that is no knock on him, it is on his team. That is an ominous statistic, being that the Mamba is leading the NBA with 29 PPG. Bryant is one of the greatest players of all time, but his time with the Lakers should be limited.

This is the toughest stretch, the most challenging stretch in my 17 years for sure,” Bryant told reporters after Los Angeles lost to the Cavs (5-17), a game in which he put up 42 points.

The Lakers, in dealing Bryant, could build a team around Howard and Gasol. They lack the quality PG play that is needed in today’s NBA, so why not go after someone like Rajon Rondo, Chris Paul, or Deron Williams? By trading the Mamba, they could also add depth to a team that is below average outside of about three or four stars. Keep in mind, although Bryant is still a beast, he is 34- years-old.

The Lakers are in disarray, and I don’t see them getting back on track anytime soon. It is time for them to do the unthinkable, and trade an all-time legend. It will be the end of an era, but the beginning of a new one for Los Angeles Laker basketball.

Follow Thomas Duffy on Twitter @TD_Knicks for articles, news, and all things NBA.