According to Bill Plaschke of the Los Angeles Times, former Los Angeles Lakers head coach Phil Jackson would like to see LeBron James traded from the team. He also mentioned that Jackson would like for the Lakers to keep Russell Westbrook and “try to make it work with him.”
“I’ve heard that Phil would like LeBron traded,” said Plaschke. “I’ve just heard that. … I do know that Phil would like to keep Westbrook and try to make it work with him.”
Jackson has been reportedly a big influence within the Lakers’ organization due to his close relationship with Lakers owner Jeanie Buss. He is currently helping advise the team on its latest coaching search.
Although Jackson has an impressive resume regarding his coaching, his executive decisions have not held the same pedigree. He has also been known to be very critical of James at times, especially when the four-time MVP was with the Miami Heat. He once referred to that team’s style of play as “Xbox” basketball and more specifically wasn’t a fan of “Xbox games or whatever those games are when you play 1-on-1.”
At the end of the day, the Lakers would be foolish to let go of arguably the greatest player in the history of the sport, as he not only makes the team a championship contender due to his mere presence, but fills the seats night in and night out at Crypto.com Arena.
James had perhaps the greatest 37-year-old season in league history when he averaged 30.3 points, 8.2 rebounds and 6.2 assists per game in his most recent campaign.
It’s quite clear what the Lakers should do this offseason: trade Westbrook and do everything in their power to acquire as many 3-and-D players as possible. After all, the Lakers were one of the best teams in the league just last year with LeBron James in prime position to win his fifth MVP. That was, until Solomon Hill recklessly dove into the forward’s ankle and hampered him for the rest of the year.