NBA Rumors: Russell Westbrook won’t be back with the Lakers next season

Russell Westbrook (Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports)
Russell Westbrook (Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports) /

NBA Rumors: It’s highly unlikely Russell Westbrook will play for the Los Angeles Lakers next season. 

Since the move of the Los Angeles Lakers acquiring Russell Westbrook was first announced, it seemed like a bad idea. And those initial worries and concerns are exactly as this season has played out for both Russ and the Lakers.

It’s been a forgettable season all around for both the Lakers and Russ, with the team clinging to one of the last few spots in the Western Conference Play-In Tournament with their only hope of making a deep playoff run consisting of having to pull off a huge upset in the first round of the actual playoffs.

Short of something miraculous happening in the postseason, the expectation is that the Lakers will for the second season in a row be subjected to a first-round playoff loss (if they can make it out of the Play-In Tournament).

Specifically, Russ has looked out of place from the opening tip in Los Angeles. He doesn’t fit next to LeBron James and Anthony Davis and there’s a good chance that he’ll end this season coming off the bench for the team.

What was a bad situation initially has gotten worse and worse over the past few weeks. So much so that there’s a report that suggests it would be “impossible” for the Lakers to bring back Russ next season.

And that really tells you how bad the situation is in Los Angeles, especially considering Russ still has one year remaining on his contract and that he’s unlikely to opt-out of that final year even though he has a player option.

That means either the Lakers are going to trade him during the offseason, whatever the cost, or figure out a way to get him off the roster at some point during the offseason, even if that means paying him to stay away from the team.

Next. Los Angeles Lakers: Is it time to move on from LeBron James?. dark

Even though the Lakers still have LeBron under contract for at least one more season, I don’t think there are many other franchises, if any, that would want to be in the Lakers’ situation right now.