‘Im really getting tired of Russ’: Kendrick Perkins blasts Lakers starting point guard’s stubborn attitude

Jonathan Sherman
4 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers were dealt their first loss of the 2022-23 NBA season in a 123-109 decision versus the Golden State Warriors on Tuesday night.

Embattled point guard Russell Westbrook got the start in the game, and while he had a solid outing, it is clear that the many issues the Lakers dealt with last season were not solved over the summer.

The team still has horrible spacing on the offensive side and struggles to stop anything on the defensive side.

In the aftermath of the game, one of Westbrook’s former teammates and current NBA analyst Kendrick Perkins took aim at the former MVP. While Perkins did seem worried about Westbrook’s play, he seemed even more concerned about his overall attitude.

“I’m really getting tired of Russ, and I love him to death as a person,” he said. “But him as a basketball player and not holding himself accountable. That’s getting old. … Russell Westbrook is under a microscope right now around the league. They’re watching everything that he do on and off the court, and I guarantee you GMs around the league that listen to this interview saying to themselves, ‘See, I told you he wouldn’t buy into having a lesser role. That’s Russ doing Russ things.'”

Perkins is referring to Westbrook’s postgame presser in which he blamed coming off the bench in the preseason game for causing the groin injury that he’s currently dealing with.

“I’ve been doing the same thing for 14 years straight,” Westbrook said following the Lakers’ loss to the Warriors. “Honestly, I didn’t even know what to do pregame. Being honest, I was trying to figure out how to stay warm and loose. … That’s something I just wasn’t accustomed to.”

In Tuesday’s game, Westbrook finished with 19 points, 11 rebounds and three assists. He shot 58.3 percent from the field and 33.3 percent from beyond the arc. He also went 4-for-5 from the charity stripe.

If he can continue that kind of production and efficiency, the Lakers should start winning games rather soon. On top of that, he could help his trade stock by continuing to build off of those numbers in the team’s upcoming slate of games.

Still, it’s easy to understand why Perkins is concerned about his former teammate’s current mentality. There is no doubt that his ability to contribute to winning basketball has been brought into question countless times over the last year. However, it is his job to continue having a positive attitude despite his current struggles.

With their first game in the books, the Lakers will suit up again on Thursday to take on the Los Angeles Clippers. A win in that game would surely be a fantastic shift in momentum for Westbrook and the team.

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Jonathan is a freelance writer, filmmaker, and passionate fan of the NBA. In the past Jonathan has covered politics, entertainment, travel, and more. He is a proud contributor of Lakers Daily.