Lakers Almost Signed $21 Million Guard & $19 Million Wing For Russell Westbrook
The Los Angeles Lakers are actively looking for a trade partner. They considered trading Russell Westbrook early in the offseason and trade rumors are wilder than ever. According to recent reports, the Lakers had a chance to sign a point guard and small forward in return for Westbrook.
Sam Amick and Jovan Buha reported that the Lakers were close to a four-team trade involving the Utah Jazz, New York Knicks, and Charlotte Hornets right before the Donovan Mitchell trade. LA wanted Terry Rozier from the Hornets and Bojan Bogdanovic from the Jazz. Rob Pelinka had to offer future draft picks and money and this trade didn’t really make sense for the purple and gold.
Lakers could use the Hornets guard as a replacement for Westbrook
Rozier and Bogdanovic could easily fit in Darvin Ham’s roster. Ham needs perimeter shooting in the upcoming season and these two would have been great additions.
The Jazz are still negotiating a potential deal with the Lakers. They may still get Westbrook, but Pelinka has to offer a couple of round-picks.
If Westbrook stays in LA, the Lakers wouldn’t mind using him as a key piece in the lineup. Ham is ready to find the best role for the one-time MVP. Pelinka would use Westbrook if he doesn’t find a good trade partner.
“Everything has been clear and upfront between he and I,” Ham said about Westbrook on September 6th. “Like, he’s been a pleasure. I’ve been a huge fan throughout his time in the league. He’s a salt of the earth. And again, he wants to win. I want to help him get that championship ring. But it starts here. It starts today. It starts with the buy-in. It starts with supporting your teammates and supporting a vision and doing that and working your butt off day in and day out.”
“Regarding the Westbrook trades that never transpired, two themes emerged in the failed talks with multiple teams: The Lakers’ lack of interest in taking on future money (a la Utah’s Mike Conley), and their refusal to offer the precious first-round picks that might yield a greater return down the line,” Amick and Buha reported. “The Lakers discussed a four-team trade with Utah, New York and Charlotte ahead of the Donovan-Mitchell-to-Cleveland trade, according to league sources. One preliminary iteration of a four-team deal would have had Bojan Bogdanović and Terry Rozier going back to Los Angeles.”