After a disappointing 2021-22 NBA season, the Los Angeles Lakers and Russell Westbrook face a significant need to bounce back in their next campaign. It just remains to be seen if they will be doing so together in the final year of his current contract.
The Lakers and Westbrook experienced a new development in the mutual need to part ways on Friday. The longtime agent of Westbrook released a statement explaining why the two are parting ways, which revealed the former NBA MVP’s desire to leave the team. It also showed how bleak of an outlook there is for a Westbrook trade without including trade assets.
According to ESPN Staff Writer Dave McMenamin, the Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets engaged in trade talks focused on Kyrie Irving in ‘recent weeks’ in a deal that would include Russell Westbrook. Those talks have ‘not progressed.’
“Los Angeles has engaged Brooklyn in trade talks in recent weeks to attempt to acquire Irving in a deal that would send Russell Westbrook to the Nets, sources told ESPN,” McMenamin wrote. “Thus far, those talks have not progressed toward an agreement.”
LATEST NBA NEWS AND TRADE RUMORS: Lakers, Nets Unlikely To Make Kyrie Irving Trade Without Third Team
The trade market for Kyrie Irving is similarly bleak for the Brooklyn Nets, and moving him does not appear to be a priority at this time. The focus for the team is on navigating the Kevin Durant trade market, but ultimately leaving the possibility open of running it back next season.
It remains to be seen if the Lakers will be willing to attach future draft capital to entice a team to take on Westbrook’s near $47.1 million salary. In a trade involving Kyrie Irving, they would undoubtedly be required to do so in order to reach an agreement.
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