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Lakers may move Gasol back to center

The SportsXchange

Losing Dwight Howard to the Houston Rockets allows the Los Angeles Lakers to move power forward Pau Gasol to center, where he is a better fit for coach Mike D'Antoni's fast-paced offensive system.

It also means talk of using the one-time amnesty provision on Gasol has ended, ESPN Los Angeles reported.

Instead, the Lakers will consider other options to release a player without the salary counting toward the cap.

Gasol played center for the Lakers in 2009 when they beat Howard and the Orlando Magic in the NBA Finals.

If Gasol does move back over to center, the Lakers have to figure out who will take over at power forward. Metta World Peace, Jordan Hill and rookie Ryan Kelly appear to be the candidates to fill that role.

If Howard had decided to remain with the Lakers, it was a possibility that the Lakers would have used the amnesty provision on Gasol, who is due more than $19 million this season.

Gasol did not fit into D'Antoni's system at power forward and was often used as the sixth man.

To help get out of the luxury tax, the Lakers could still use the amnesty provision on Kobe Bryant, Steve Blake or World Peace. While no decision has been made, World Peace is the most likely candidate, according to ESPN Los Angeles.
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