The Los Angeles Lakers entered the 2022-23 NBA season with a loss. They lost three straight games and most analysts place the blame on Russell Westbrook. The veteran didn’t leave the team in the summer despite his struggles last season. Now we have people suggesting that Russ is not the only problem LA has. Vincent Goodwill of Yahoo Sports believes that the Lakers should trade LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Russell Westbrook and pretty much everyone else you can think of.
According to Goodwill, the Lakers should start all over again.
“I think they should just say, you know what? From an extreme case, trade AD, trade LeBron, trade Russ if you can. Start all over,” Goodwill said. “Because what you have is not sustainable, even in this season. By ‘sustainable’ I mean, even if you get Buddy Hield and Myles Turner that makes you, what, a sixth seed in the Western Conference? That’s not Laker expectations. That’s not LeBron James expectations. There’s no path to get better. So why not just tear it down?”
Lakers were advised to trade LeBron James before, Jeanie Buss is a fan
Jeanie Buss and Magic Johnson were more than excited to get LeBron on their roster. He is the ultimate leader in the NBA and yes, he is all-in when it comes to team work. Unfortunately, the Lakers haven’t won a lot of games in the last two games. Moreover, they missed the playoffs twice. LeBron delivers an MVP performance each and every season and we can’t really say he’s responsible for the mess. Buss and Rob Pelinka rewarded him with another extension. In other words, LeBron isn’t going anywhere this year.
The Lakers can trade him in February though. Goodwill believes that trading LeBron would be the most extreme move the Lakers will ever make, but he really supports this trade.
“It’s extremely extreme,” Dan Devine said. “I can’t abide by this. I do believe, though, that you’re right in the idea of, like, you’ve got to burn every boat, every bridge you’ve got. You’ve got to burn every asset in the quiver to improve the team around LeBron and AD.
“Especially when you got rid of a championship-level defense around those two guys. You said, we’re going to build a different kind of team. But LeBron and AD are what count.”
The Lakers have to come up with a different solution
Pelinka considered trading Russ and a few first-round picks to fix the situation. It wasn’t their best shot, but NBA teams don’t want Westbrook. Everyone is going after a future first-round pick.
The Lakers trust LeBron and they wouldn’t trade him at this point. They just need stronger players around him. That’s all.
“Let me abundantly clear: We have one of the great players in LeBron James to ever play the game on our team. He committed to us with a long-term contract, a three-year contract,” Pelinka said. “So of course we will do everything we can, picks included, to make deals that give us a chance to help LeBron get to the end. He committed to our organization. That’s got to be a bilateral commitment, and it’s there.”