Skip Bayless: ‘Patrick Beverley right now is better than Russell Westbrook’

Peter Dewey
3 Min Read

The Los Angeles Lakers made an interesting trade this week, acquiring guard Patrick Beverley from the Utah Jazz in exchange for Talen Horton-Tucker and Stanley Johnson.

There’s no doubt that Beverley can be an impactful player for Los Angeles, but it does raise questions about whether or not the team will hang onto guard Russell Westbrook this offseason. It has been reported that the team is exploring deals for the former MVP ahead of training camp.

Fox Sports analyst Skip Bayless believes that Beverley, who played for the Minnesota Timberwolves last season, is currently a better player than Westbrook. It’s certainly a bold take, especially since Westbrook is a nine-time All-Star and likely will be a Hall of Famer.

Last season for Minnesota, Beverley averaged 9.2 points, 4.1 rebounds and 4.6 assists per game while shooting 40.6 percent from the field and 34.3 percent from beyond the arc. While Beverley did shoot better from 3-point range than Westbrook, Bayless may have gone a little far by claiming that Beverley is a better playmaker as well.

Westbrook finished the 2021-22 season averaging 18.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and 7.1 assists per game while shooting 44.4 percent from the field and 29.8 percent from downtown. While those numbers aren’t up to Westbrook’s usual standards, Beverley has never had a season even close to that type of production in his career.

Prior to the 2021-22 season, Westbrook had averaged at least 10.3 assists per game in five of his previous six seasons. His jump shot has certainly taken a step back, but Westbrook can still be a valuable player on the offensive end.

Beverley showed support for Westbrook following the trade on Twitter.

There’s certainly a chance that Beverley and Westbrook never play together, and it may be because the Lakers have other holes on the roster to fill, specifically in the shooting department.

After losing guard Malik Monk in free agency, Los Angeles could attempt to trade Westbrook for shooters since Beverley can handle the point guard duties.

It will be interesting to see how the Lakers proceed the rest of the offseason, especially since they have been unable to find a suitor for Westbrook to this point.

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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.