Lakers Insider Doesn’t Hold Back About Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook, Los Angeles Lakers, NBA Trade Rumors
NBA Analysis Network

There are a lot of strong opinions when it comes to Russell Westbrook and the Los Angeles Lakers and almost all of them are negative. Outside of Phil Jackson, there aren’t many people that believe the Lakers should bring him back for the 2022-23 NBA season.

Westbrook struggled mightily in his first season in the purple and gold. He was unable to co-exist with LeBron James and Anthony Davis when they were on the court, which led to some ugly performances throughout the season.

The last salvo seemed to have been tossed during his exit interview, when Westbrook pretty much threw everyone under the bus, including James, Davis, and head coach Frank Vogel.

The polarizing point guard is only one season removed from averaging a triple-double, but he was unable to find his niche to consistently produce in Los Angeles.

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There has been some chatter that the Los Angeles Lakers could actually run things back in the 2022-23 season with Russell Westbrook as their starting point guard. That is something Jovan Buha of The Athletic believes would be a massive mistake. He had some strong words about the situation in Los Angeles.

“There is no salvaging the situation. He’s unwilling to adapt — and clearly unaware that he needs to. Unless the Lakers are willing to punt on another James-Davis season, their best option is to either trade Westbrook — and send out a first-round pick or two if the market doesn’t soften — or to send him home and proceed without him next season.

“There is little evidence that Westbrook can be the player the Lakers need him to be, even with a new head coach and if the Lakers can somehow manage to improve their supporting cast with players that bolster Westbrook’s skill set.”

LATEST NBA NEWS & TRADE RUMORS: How Russell Westbrook’s Contract Could Become Lakers Asset

That is certainly a strong take from someone who follows the Lakers very closely. There is a chance that this is just posturing on their part, trying to improve his trade stock that is as low as it has ever been in his career.

Including draft capital is something that Los Angeles is not currently willing to do, so this could drag on for a little while longer. Nothing short of a miracle would seemingly help that trio get things on track and help the Los Angeles Lakers become competitive next season. The best route for both is to find a trade partner as soon as possible.