NBA insider reveals what will Lakers need to do in order to move Russell Westbrook
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Dan Woike of The Los Angeles Times is reporting that the Los Angeles Lakers will need to give up at least one first round draft pick if they want to move Russell Westbrook before the start of the new season. If the Lakers want to get something in return for a Westbrook trade, they would have to attach a second round pick.
Woike spoke with several executives, who told him what the Lakers will need to do if they want to get rid of Westbrook. “In conversations with executives from rival teams in both conferences, it’s clear what the cost for any deal is going to be,” Woike wrote.
“It’ll take at least one first-round pick to park Westbrook somewhere and a second first-round pick to bring back multiple rotation pieces, sources with knowledge of the situation not authorized to speak publicly said.
Those prices could rise (possibly with pick swaps) or lower (bad contracts coming back to the Lakers) depending on variables”.
Westbrook's salary is making it tough for the Lakers to move him
Westbrook has a salary of $47 million for this upcoming season.
Contender teams don't have that much space to acquire Westbrook, while younger teams don't really need someone like Westbrook. Younger teams with a cap space could potentially trade for Westbrook, but the Lakers will have to give them draft picks in return.
Westbrook struggled with his game throughout the entire season, but he was able to stay healthy and appear in 78 games. Because of his ability to stay healthy and fit, Westbrook earned a praise from Lakers owner Jeanie Buss.
“All I can say is that, from my point of view, [Westbrook] was our best player last year. He played pretty much every single game, showed up, worked hard,” Buss told Sami Amick of The Athletic. “You know, I would have loved to have seen what this team would have looked like if they stayed healthy.
It’s really tough to win when Anthony Davis isn’t on the court. LeBron [James] was hurt a lot of the season. But Russ showed up every game and played hard every night. And, you know, I just really appreciate him for who he is and what he brings to the team”.
Later, Buss clarified herself and said Westbrook was their most consistent player. “The word I should have used was ‘consistent.’ He played 78 games last season,” Buss clarified herself later in a text message to Amick.