Lakers close deal to acquire Westbrook

1627631908 Lakers close deal to acquire Westbrook

The Los Angeles Lakers agreed to a deal with the Washington Wizards to acquire Russell westbrook by Kyle kuzma, Montrezl harrell, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope and the 22nd pick in Thursday night’s draft, sources told ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

The Wizards will send second-round picks from 2024 and 2028 to the Lakers to complete the deal, sources said.

Harrell opted for his $ 9.7 million player option for next season, paving the way for the trade.

The Lakers also had talks with the Sacramento Kings about a possible deal with Buddy hield involving Kuzma and Harrell, sources told Wojnarowski, but ultimately turned to Westbrook.

Westbrook will join Lebron James, Anthony Davis & Co. in Los Angeles, which will give the team a nine-time All-Star point guard. Westbrook, who turns 33 in November, has averaged a triple-double in a season four times in his career, including last season. It gives the Lakers two of the five best triple-doubles players of his career: Westbrook has 184, James 99.

One area where it could help Los Angeles would be its game creation. The Lakers ranked 18th in points per game created from assists in 2020-21. Westbrook has led the NBA in that category in three of the past four seasons, with the one exception being the year he spent with James harden In Houston.

Dennis Schroder he scored the point for the Lakers last season but turned down the maximum extension the Lakers could offer him during the regular season to pursue a more lucrative free-agent deal this summer.

Westbrook, who is from Southern California and played at UCLA, has been intrigued by the idea of ​​returning to his Los Angeles roots, sources said. He owes him $ 44.2 million this season; The Westbrook-James-Davis trio would combine for $ 121 million in 2021-22: 19 teams will win less heading into free agency.

As for Washington, the deal was made with Bradley Beal; creates some salary cap flexibility for the future to add talent around the star guard, sources told Wojnarowski. Beal is entering the final year of his contract and is ready to be a free agent next offseason.

The exchange would open north of $ 25 million in space for Washington in 2022-23.

News of the deal had an immediate impact on bookmakers. According to William Hill’s Caesars Sportsbook, the Lakers went from 4-1 to +350 to win the NBA title. The Brooklyn Nets are +225 favorites.

Westbrook, meanwhile, is the +110 favorite to be the NBA’s assist leader.

Information from ESPN’s Bobby Marks was used in this report.