Russell Westbrook opens up on his improved mental health going from Lakers to Clippers

Jesse Cinquini
3 Min Read
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Los Angeles Clippers point guard Russell Westbrook recently said that the Clippers give him “a place where I’m comfortable, with people that I like and want to be around.”

The floor general joined the Clippers after being bought out by the Utah Jazz last season. He then re-signed with the Clippers on a two-year deal in the offseason.

Westbrook also said that he was relieved that the Los Angeles Lakers traded him to the Jazz back in February. In April, he admitted that he felt better mentally after the trade.

“His 12 days as a member of Utah will go down as a footnote, his 15th NBA season remembered more for the turmoil of what preceded it with the Lakers — ‘I was relieved on all levels’ after being traded, he said — and the resurgence that followed during his Clippers tenure,” Andrew Greif wrote.

The 34-year-old had a forgettable performance in the Clippers’ loss to the Jazz on Friday. He ended up with four points, nine rebounds, four assists, one steal and one block in 37 minutes of playing time. Additionally, Westbrook took only four shots from the field and converted two of them.

The Clippers lost to the Jazz 120-118 thanks largely to a 35-point performance from star forward Lauri Markkanen.

Westbrook has played for the Oklahoma City Thunder, Lakers, Washington Wizards, Houston Rockets and Clippers during his 15 seasons in the NBA and is in his second season with the Clippers.

He averaged 15.8 points, 7.6 assists, 4.9 rebounds and 1.1 steals per game across 21 appearances with the Clippers during the 2022-23 regular season. Westbrook also shot 48.9 percent from the field and 35.6 percent from behind the 3-point arc.

The Clippers lost to the Phoenix Suns in five games in the first round of the 2023 playoffs after taking Game 1 of the series, with Westbrook stuffing the stat sheet in the first contest. In that game, the former first-round pick finished with nine points, 10 rebounds and eight assists.

Westbrook seems to be enjoying his time playing with the Clippers. Here’s to hoping that he will stick around with the team for the remainder of his NBA career.

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Jesse is a sports journalist with extensive experience covering the NBA. He has worked as a staff writer covering the Lakers’ dreaded rivals, the Boston Celtics, for SB Nation. He has also covered the New York Knicks for The Knicks Wall.