TWC Sportsnet panel debates whether Pau Gasol will leave the Lakers

Pau Gasol talks about the disappointing season and his future following his Lakers exit interview at their training facility in El Segundo, CA on Thursday, April 17, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze)

Pau Gasol talks about the disappointing season and his future following his Lakers exit interview at their training facility in El Segundo, CA on Thursday, April 17, 2014. (Photo by Scott Varley, Daily Breeze)

The uncertainty hovers over Pau Gasol like a heavy cloud ready to unleash the darkest and most violent thunderstorm. But then the skies brighten and Gasol discovers he is still on the Lakers once again.

This year, that same issue lingers over whether Gasol will stay with the Lakers albeit for different reasons. Instead of the Lakers possibly using him as a trade chip as they have done ever since the nixed Chris Paul deal three years ago, Gasol might leave on his own accord when he becomes an unrestricted free agent in July.

Both in his exit interview last week and in a subsequent blog post on Wednesday, Gasol offered various signs he will leave the Lakers.

After the Lakers’ 27-55 record marked their worst season in L.A. franchise history, Gasol said he would like to be for a championship caliber team. After having philosophical differences with coach Mike D’Antoni over his fast-paced system, Gasol conceded his standing or firing could play at least one of the factors in his decision. Gasol reiterated that Kobe Bryant could sway his opinion to stay with the Lakers, but to what degree appears unanswered.

That’s why Time Warner Cable host Chris McGee, analyst Dave Miller and I debated the topic here on Wednesday night. Did Gasol already play his last game with the Lakers? Judging by the tea leaves, I would argue yes.

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Follow L.A. Daily News Lakers beat writer Mark Medina on Twitter and on Facebook. E-mail him at mark.medina@langnews.com

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