How about this, instead of Rondo for Howard, the Cís trade the Rondo for Kobe Bryant.
1. Scared theyíll lose Dwight to free agency, Lakers choose to build around 27 year old Howard, instead of trying to rebuild around 34 year old Bryant. Pretty much coming full circle from when they traded 32 year old Shaq, choosing to go with 26 year old Bryant. Get rid of the players Dwight doesnít like (Kobe), bring in players he does (Dwight and Rondo are buddies, right?), maybe Dwight signs an extension now if the Lakers make it clear it's Dwightís team.
2. Lakers have said theyíre not trading Howard, said nothing about Kobe, wink, wink.
3. While the salaries would have to be pretty close to make a trade work, shedding a $30m contract is a big step towards cutting costs. Not that the Lakers are that concerned about cutting costs, but they donít want to pay a $70m luxury tax next year for a dysfunctional team that canít make the playoffs. Getting several smaller contracts for a big one, theyíll be easier to move later for cost cutting purposes. Or maybe a multi-team trade with Rondo and expirings going to Lakers.
4. The Celtics choose to make one last veteran push, with Garnett, Pierce, and Kobe all off the books/unguaranteed after 2014.
Rondo/Green/Bass works, or perhaps a multi-team deal moving Green or Bass for expirings. Maybe throw in Avery Bradley (since he wonít get as much time with Kobe).
?/Sullinger (next year).
(? = Maybe the Cís swing another small deal for Dajuan Blair or some other serviceable big).
Get a core of Rondo/Howard (something a lot of us hoped for in the past), and maybe even Bradley/Green for very solid starting support. (Or maybe it's Green/Bass/Bradley to ATL for Josh Smith, now the Lakers just put together the coveted Celticsblog dream team of Rondo/Smith/Howard!
Obviously we lose a lot of the depth we had left, but other minor deals could probably be made to help patch some holes.
Think about it, if Danny was the GM of the Lakers, he probably would have already pulled the trigger on this thing, lol.
(Not really serious about this, so no need to waste your time poking holes or ridiculing it, just having some fun spit balling