Report: Any Russell Westbrook trade to Utah Jazz would most likely include Mike Conley, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt

Peter Dewey
4 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers could move Russell Westbrook to the Utah Jazz at the trade deadline, which would likely bring Mike Conley, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt to Los Angeles, according to Yahoo Sports’ Jake Fischer.

“One of the possible trade destinations for Westbrook, Utah, also remains a major catalyst ahead of the deadline,” Fischer wrote. “Any deal that sends Westbrook to the Jazz would almost certainly include veteran point guard Mike Conley, wing shooter Malik Beasley and forward Jarred Vanderbilt, but sources told Yahoo Sports that Utah’s front office has discussed various deals across the league with each of those three players — including several combinations of Beasley and Vanderbilt heading out of Salt Lake City together.”

The Lakers would likely have to part ways with some draft capital to get a deal done with Utah, but the hypothetical package would certainly improve the Lakers’ depth this season.

Westbrook, who is a candidate for the NBA’s Sixth Man of the Year award, is in the final year of his contract. Los Angeles may look to move him for players that fit better around Anthony Davis and LeBron James as the Lakers attempt to make a run at a playoff spot.

A former MVP, Westbrook has played well this season, but he has struggled with his shot, which makes him a tough fit around James as a floor spacer. The nine-time All-Star is averaging 15.7 points, 6.3 rebounds and 7.6 assists per game while shooting 41.2 percent from the field and 28.1 percent from beyond the arc this season.

Utah currently holds a play-in spot in the Western Conference, but the team is a long way away from contending for a title after trading Donovan Mitchell and Rudy Gobert this past offseason.

Trading players such as Beasley, Conley and Vanderbilt would likely allow the Jazz to add more draft capital to help bring in more young talent to the roster. Utah already received a boatload of picks from the Cleveland Cavaliers and Minnesota Timberwolves in the Mitchell and Gobert deals.

The Lakers certainly would benefit from adding three more rotation-level players to their roster, but it may not be enough to push them over the top in a crowded Western Conference.

Right now, the Lakers sit in the No. 12 spot in the West, but they are just three games behind the No. 4 seed Dallas Mavericks.

While Conley, Beasley and Vanderbilt are all solid players, they aren’t stars that would raise Los Angeles’ ceiling immensely.

Essentially, the Lakers need to decide whether or not it is worth trading draft capital to move off of Westbrook and bring in new talent this season.

Los Angeles reportedly would give up two first-round picks in a deal for Kyrie Irving, but he is an All-Star caliber player.

It will be interesting to see if the Lakers end up making a trade by the Feb. 9 deadline considering how many rumors they’ve been mentioned in lately.

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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.