View the original article to see embedded media.
Russell Westbrook has had a very disappointing season for the Los Angeles Lakers. On the surface, his box score stats are solid: 18.5 PPG, 7.4 RPG, and 7.1 APG. However, many have criticized him for being a turnover-heavy point guard and an inconsistent defender.
There has been some speculation about the Los Angeles Lakers potentially moving on from Russell Westbrook during this upcoming offseason. Rob Pelinka didn’t rule out the possibility of that happening during his exit interview. Most recently, Lakers insider Jovan Buha was asked if the team would end up moving on from Russell Westbrook, and Buha responded with a simple “yes”.
The million-dollar question: Will the Lakers move on from Russell Westbrook this offseason? — @ShowTime_32
The million-dollar answer: Yes.
There is no doubt that this could be a beneficial move for the Los Angeles Lakers. A Russell Westbrook trade could potentially get the team multiple players that fit better with stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Buha’s statement makes sense, and previously, Marc Stein’s report suggested that it was “impossible” that the Lakers would end up bringing back the point guard for next season.
Jousting with reporters in press conferences is apparently not the lone source of pushback these days from under-fire guard Russell Westbrook. There has been no shortage of defiance behind the scenes, I’m told, when coaches and teammates have tried to broach changes in role or approach with the former MVP. For all the obvious complexities involved in trying to move Westbrook when he’s owed a whopping $47 million next season at age 34, one league source described the idea of bringing him back next season as “impossible” based on current tension levels. The question then becomes: If the Lakers can’t construct a palatable trade, do they try to just buy Westbrook out? Or waive and stretch him?
It remains to be seen if the Los Angeles Lakers do end up trading Russell Westbrook. It was previously reported that Russell Westbrook’s trade value is “extremely negative” currently, and that could make finding a desirable deal very difficult.
Hopefully, we see Russell Westbrook thrive and bounce back next season. He is still a capable enough point guard, even if he isn’t the MVP-caliber player that he once was with the Oklahoma City Thunder.