The first wild Pau Gasol trade rumor came out this week, and the Laker big man swatted it away. Gasol is fully aware of the fact that the NBA trade rumor mill is just getting warmed up. Reports the LA Times: “Bulls.com’s Sam Smith quoted ‘Laker insiders’ who said ‘Gasol would like to play for the Bulls.’ That contradicts the endless statements Gasol has made that he’d like to remain a Laker. He reiterated that stance again Tuesday during a visit at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. ‘My position is still the same,’ Gasol said. ‘I still would love to be a part of the Lakers and continue to be here to help the team win more championships as soon as possible. It’s out of my control and it’s out of my hands, no matter what.’ [Mitch] Kupchak offered no assurances to Gasol and reporters at last week’s exit interview that Gasol will remain with the Lakers, and suggested the team might use his him as their main trading chip. [...] ‘I don’t know where that came from,’ Gasol said. ‘It’s pointless to really worry about it. I’m totally cool with it, whatever they say. The stories will appear and then disappear on something that does or doesn’t happen again. It sucks to be in that position, but it is what it is.’ Gasol has had plenty of experience handling that this season. The Lakers originally traded him to the Houston Rockets in a deal that would’ve landed them Chris Paul, but the NBA rejected the deal. Gasol spent all of training camp whether each practice marked his last day as a Laker. As the March 15 trade deadline approached, he wondered if his Lakers days were numbered. And he sounded resigned to experiencing another round of breathless reports linking him in trade possibilities. It apparently has already started. ‘There’s a lot of rumors,’ Gasol said. ‘Different rumors, all kinds of rumors. Once the [NBA] draft gets closer [on June 28], all kinds of stuff still again will come up.’”