Having weighed up Gatland's opening move, the Wallabies selectors will reveal their hand with an initial 25-man squad on 19 May.
Bob Dwyer coached Australia to World Cup glory in 1991, guided the New South Wales Waratahs against the Lions in 2001 and experienced rugby life north of the equator with spells in charge of Leicester and Bristol.
Here, he looks at some of the selection posers facing Deans and his colleagues ahead of the three-Test series which begins in Australia in June.
David Pocock's absence
The Lions forwards approaching the first breakdown of the series in Brisbane on 22 June will be relieved not to be confronted with the familiar sight of flanker David Pocock's broad torso clamped over the ball.
Pocock suffered a serious knee injury playing for the Brumbies in March
However, Dwyer believes that with 110-Test veteran
impressing on a temporary deal with the Brumbies, the Waratahs'
ably deputising for Pocock during the autumn and Queensland's
emerging from Super 15, the Lions would be wrong to think it is Australia's weak point.
"The three of them are world class without any doubt," he told BBC Sport.
"Pocock was not an especially good attacking player - most Australians got a shock if he ever passed the ball. I wouldn't think any of those players are a step down from him at all.
"Hooper is probably the best attacking player of the lot and, allied to that, he currently has the best work-rate of any Australia number seven by some distance.
"Smith is probably the most physical and the hardest to move over the top of the ball and is certainly the most experienced by a long way.
"He is probably the best guy under pressure; he just doesn't seem to get ruffled at all.
"One of the very well-respected newspaper columnists over here has suggested - if all things are equal - to start with George Smith and bring Hooper into the pitch later. That's a possibility."
is in his first ever season of rugby union after switching from rugby league and Aussie Rules football," said Dwyer.
"I had been a bit doubtful but in the last couple of weeks he has really played well and, if he keeps improving at that rate, he will give it a nudge either as winger or full-back.
Dec 2012: Wales 12-14 Australia - highlights
"He is very tall, extremely athletic and extremely good in the air with very good pace and reflexes.
"He can take an opportunity in the blink of an eyelid, with a run, change of direction or a pass.
another league convert, has looked good on the wing for the Brumbies. He is big, strong and very quick. He has only played one Test so far but he'll be there or thereabouts.
If Wycliff Palu doesn't make it back to full fitness at number eight, then we will probably go to a newcomer in
who is captain of the Brumbies and has been absolutely outstanding at Super Rugby level.
"He really keeps things under control and his discussions with the referee when playing for the Brumbies have been really good. He can add that maturity."
The captaincy issue
, who led the Wallabies to third place at the 2011 Rugby World Cup, returned from an 11-month lay-off in March and appears set to captain them for the Lions series.
"It probably looks like being Horwill, but I would like to see him handle the role with a little more circumspection," said Dwyer.
Nov 2012: England 14-20 Australia - Highlights
"For the Queensland Reds I don't think that he has always handled the negotiations with the referee nearly as well as I would have liked. He was more confrontational than I think you are entitled to be.
"If it is not Horwill, then we start to struggle.
could do the job but, from the outside at least, he has never shown no massive desire to do so.
"The Waratahs have tried
who was OK but not terrific,
could probably do the job, but I don't really see any stand-outs."
Dwyer went on to coach Leicester after winning the World Cup with Australia
So, what areas of the Australia team might Gatland and his team target?
"I would like to see a number eight and a blindside flanker in really good form because the Lions selection in those positions will not be easy with so many good players," said Dwyer.
"If Wycliff Palu can get back to tip-top form, that would be useful because he is such a big bruising guy who can wear down opposition defences.
"We have a few number sixes but none of them stand out as world class.
"I wouldn't like to see some of our first-choice players get injured either - if we lose James O'Connor we lose a bit of sheer brilliance and if
is not up to his best we lose a little of our attacking edge."
What hosting a visiting Lions side means
"A Lions team arriving is exciting, just because it doesn't happen very often," said Dwyer.
"It is a unique international team in bringing together a number of other national sides - there is no other team that does that.
"It has a certain sort of romance about it. I have been enthralled ever since watching the 1959 tourists practice as an 18-year-old and have been a massive admirer of them ever since.
"If there is pressure as hosts it is because Lions tours are so infrequent that it is a long time, beyond most player's individual careers, to square the account if you lose."
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