Report: LeBron James was ‘significant proponent’ in Lakers push for Russell Westbrook

Casey McCarthy
2 Min Read

Los Angeles Lakers star LeBron James seemed to have been a key proponent in the team’s decision to trade for guard Russell Westbrook in the offseason. This is a decision that many other teams and executives around the league have questioned, especially as the team has struggled at times in the first half of the season.

“Rob Pelinka is the team’s vice president of basketball operations and general manager,” wrote Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus. “The decision ultimately falls on his resume.

“But sources also say that James was a significant proponent for getting Westbrook. Does he bear any responsibility if he and his agent, Rich Paul of Klutch Sports, applied significant pressure on the team to get it done?”

The Lakers have been up and down for much of the 2021-22 season so far, currently sitting at 22-22. Playing without forward Anthony Davis, who is still sidelined with injury, hasn’t made things any easier for Los Angeles.

Westbrook has looked like an awkward fit for the Lakers at times this season in his role at point guard. The veteran guard is averaging 18.6 points, 8.1 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game for Los Angeles this season. Unfortunately, his turnover numbers have followed him to Los Angeles, averaging 4.3 turnovers per game.

James is still as dominant as ever as he tries to continue to will the Lakers toward another postseason run. The veteran forward is averaging 28.8 points, 7.5 rebounds and 6.5 assists per game this season.

Los Angeles continues to try and weather the storm with Davis sidelined, losing three of its last five games. The Lakers are back in action on Wednesday against the Indiana Pacers.

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Casey is a sportswriter working most recently with the Columbia Basin Herald in Moses Lake, Wash. and is a graduate of Western Kentucky University. He has been an NFL and NBA fan for more than 20 years.