NBA insider on potential Kyrie Irving-Russell Westbrook trade: ‘The Lakers are sick of the Russell Westbrook experience’

Peter Dewey
2 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers and Brooklyn Nets both find themselves in similar situations entering the offseason.

The Lakers, who missed the playoffs in the 2021-22 season, are trying to find a way to move off of guard Russell Westbrook to improve their roster for the 2022-23 season.

Brooklyn is in a similar situation, as the team is noncommittal to the future of guard Kyrie Irving heading into the offseason.

Both players have player options on their contracts for the 2022-23 season, and one Lakers insider believes that there could be some logic to a Westbrook-Irving swap.

The Athletic’s Bill Oram explained his thinking on a recent appearance on “The Herd with Colin Cowherd.”

“I don’t think it’s nuts,” Oram said of a Westbrook-Irving trade. “I don’t know that it’s going to happen, but from a logical standpoint it makes sense. From a logical standpoint, the Nets are absolutely sick of the Kyrie Irving experience. The Lakers are sick of the Russell Westbrook experience. That said, the Nets know they have the better player and the better asset despite all of his idiosyncrasies.”

The Nets clearly have the leverage if any deal were to be completed, as Irving is a much better player than Westbrook at this point of their respective careers.

In addition, this would be an interesting swap because it would reunite the two guards with their former teammates. Irving would reunite with LeBron James, who he played with on the Cleveland Cavaliers, and Westbrook would reunite with Kevin Durant.

Westbrook and Durant had a bit of an ugly breakup from the Oklahoma City Thunder, and that could throw another wrench into any potential Irving-Westbrook swap this coming offseason.

While Oram thinks the trade makes sense, it seems that there are a lot of hurdles that would need to be cleared for it to actually happen between the Lakers and Nets.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.