Pau Gasol's role changed dramatically as the Lakers shuffled their offensive pecking order this season under new coach Mike Brown. The 7-foot power forward fell to the third option behind Andrew Bynum and, of course, Kobe Bryant. Gasol's statistics weren't what they were earlier in his career and he didn't make the Western Conference All-Star team this season, but Bynum did. Gasol's name was linked to numerous trade rumors after the Lakers' failed attempt to deal him in December. One word summed up his basketball life in 2011-12. "Intense," Gasol said before the Lakers faced the Denver Nuggets in Game 3 of their Western Conference quarterfinal series Friday night at Pepsi Center. "No real breaks, a lot of basketball and a lot of stuff going around." The tension eased somewhat after the trade deadline came and went March 15 and he remained with the Lakers. He adapted and excelled in his new role, and certainly he played it to perfection as a playmaker in the high post in the first two playoff games.