Russell Westbrook’s brother seemingly takes issue with his benching in 4th quarter of Lakers-Wizards game

Zach Stevens
3 Min Read

During a very dismal first season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Russell Westbrook was blamed for just about everything that went wrong with the team, and there was little hope he would turn things around this season.

But ever since being moved to the bench early this season, Westbrook has been playing better. Yet he wasn’t on the court during crunch time in L.A.’s 119-117 Sunday win over the Washington Wizards, and his brother was apparently upset about it.

Westbrook’s statistics as a reserve aren’t significantly better than his numbers last season as a starter, but according to the eye test, he looks like a different player.

He has put more focus on his role on the team, which is to push the pace, create fast-break opportunities, attack the paint and get his teammates easy baskets.

The Lakers started this season 2-10, but with the vultures seemingly circling the team, they have won 11 of their last 17 games, and Westbrook has been one reason why. His shooting efficiency may still be subpar, but he has found a way to help his team compete and win even when his shots aren’t falling or he is unable to convert layups.

For almost an entire calendar year, the former league MVP has been the subject of countless trade rumors, as many people believe the Lakers need one or two more pieces in order to have a shot at contending for the NBA championship. But now that he has turned things around, the chances of him actually being dealt have gone down considerably.

On Sunday, Westbrook shot only 4-of-12 from the field, but he had nine rebounds and eight assists, and his relentless style of play helped the team register a solid 21 fast-break points.

With Anthony Davis reportedly expected to be out for at least a month with a foot injury, L.A. will have to rely even more on its transition game in order to win games, which will give Westbrook an opportunity to shine ever brighter.

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Zach has always had a profound love and respect for the Lakers that has inspired him to write about the franchise. He has a great deal of admiration for LeBron James, and his overall knowledge about the NBA has made him a solid addition to the Lakers Daily staff.