Report: Russell Westbrook’s play in past month has made it ‘increasingly unlikely’ Lakers will trade him before deadline

David Akerman
3 Min Read

Ever since making a move to the bench, Los Angeles Lakers point guard Russell Westbrook has played a lot better. As a reserve this season, he’s averaging 15.2 points, 5.8 rebounds and 7.9 assists per game.

It seems like his improved play as a reserve has made it “increasingly unlikely” that he will be traded before the league’s Feb. 9 trade deadline.

“According to a source with knowledge of the Lakers’ plans, Westbrook’s play this past month has made it increasingly unlikely that he will be traded before the league’s Feb. 9 deadline,” wrote Sam Amick of The Athletic.

While this recent report makes it seem like Westbrook will be with the Lakers through the end of the season, there are apparently still concerns within the Lakers organization about the former MVP’s fit alongside LeBron James.

Los Angeles’ primary trade package is reportedly centered around Kendrick Nunn, Patrick Beverley and a first-round pick, so maybe it isn’t really looking to trade Westbrook anymore.

It will be interesting to see what types of rumors make the rounds as the season wears on. The Lakers have hit another bump in the road after correcting things earlier in the season. They are 1-3 in the their last four games and dropped a heartbreaker to the Boston Celtics on Tuesday after being up by as much as 13 points in the fourth quarter.

They sit in 12th place in the Western Conference with an 11-16 record but are just two games back of the Golden State Warriors, who are in 10th place, which happens to be the last spot in the play-in tournament.

The Purple and Gold didn’t make it to the postseason at all in the 2021-22 campaign as injuries and chemistry issues hampered the squad.

Things might turn out the same way this season if the front office doesn’t make a big move soon. Los Angeles has been linked to players like Jae Crowder, Jakob Poeltl, Gary Trent Jr. and Kyle Kuzma, but it remains to be seen whether or not the franchise will finalize a move for any of those players.

It is apparently prioritizing shooting in trade talks and targeting players such as Bojan Bogdanovic, Cam Reddish and Evan Fournier.

For now, the Lakers are likely more focused on matters on the court. The team is set to host Nikola Jokic and the Denver Nuggets on Friday.

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David is a University of Maryland graduate who has spent most of his life in Miami. He has experience in writing, editing and video production. He is a proud contributor of Lakers Daily.