The Los Angeles Lakers had a tough decision to make this summer. They had LeBron James and were looking for the best possible partner to help him win more championships. They looked at many options, including pairing him with 2 different NBA stars and still made the wrong choice with their 3rd option.
The Los Angeles Lakers Tried Pairing LeBron James With 2 Different NBA Stars This Offseason and Still Unbelievably Made the Wrong Choice With Their 3rd Option is a topic that discusses how the Los Angeles Lakers tried pairing LeBron James with two different NBA stars this offseason, but still made the wrong choice with their third option. Read more in detail here: lakers players.
Russell Westbrook was acquired by the Los Angeles Lakers in the league’s greatest blockbuster transaction this summer. As the club tries to return to the NBA Finals for the second time in three years, the great point guard will team up with LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
However, Westbrook was not LA’s first choice. The club attempted to sign one of the NBA’s top stars, as well as a second All-NBA player to pair alongside James. Russ was acquired from the Washington Wizards just after that.
The former Oklahoma City Thunder and Houston Rockets guard is an excellent addition for the Los Angeles Lakers. Westbrook, even as the organization’s third option, was the wrong guard to sign.
Russell Westbrook has joined LeBron James and Anthony Davis as the Lakers’ third star.
During Game 2 of the Western Conference second round in the 2020 NBA Playoffs, Russell Westbrook of the Houston Rockets drives the ball against LeBron James of the Los Angeles Lakers in the fourth quarter. | Getty Images/David P. DeFelice
In the end, Westbrook was selected by the Los Angeles Lakers. But Damian Lillard was the catalyst for the Lakers’ summer narrative.
According to Bleacher Report’s Eric Pincus, the team went into the summer hoping to sign Lillard. Dame has said repeatedly that he wants to stay with the Trail Blazers, and general manager Neil Olshey has openly stated that he would not trade his team’s superstar.
Chris Paul was the Lakers’ backup plan, but the Phoenix Suns had reached the NBA Finals and weren’t about to let him go. According to Yahoo Sports, DeMar DeRozan was also mentioned, but the Los Angeles native chose to join with the Chicago Bulls.
The club rushed to get a trade done to get the 2016-17 MVP, Westbrook, who was presumably the next choice. The Brodie was acquired for Kyle Kuzma, Montrezl Harrell, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, and the No. 22 selection in the 2021 draft.
The Lakers, on the other hand, should have gone in a different direction, one that was already on the table before pursuing the two-time scoring champion.
A trade for Buddy Hield of Sacramento would have been a better option.
Prior to the Westbrook trade, speculations of a potential Buddy Hield trade with the Sacramento Kings circulated. While the transaction with Washington included all three players as well as a draft selection, the rumored Hield trade only included Kuzma and Harrell. Caldwell-Pope would have chosen to remain in Los Angeles.
Westbrook, Wayne Ellington, Trevor Ariza, LeBron James, and Anthony Davis are the expected starters for the Lakers. Veteran players like Kent Bazemore, Carmelo Anthony, and Dwight Howard are also in the mix. In some way, Malik Monk, Rajon Rondo, Kendrick Nunn, and Talen Horton-Tucker will all be participating.
The Lakers would have gotten both Hield and Caldwell-Pope in the deal with Sacramento, two great outside shooters who would have suited in better around James and Davis. Hield made 39.1 percent of his three-point shots last season, averaging 10.2 attempts per game. In terms of 3-point shooting percentage, the Oklahoma product is already 30th all-time.
As a starter alongside James the past two seasons, Caldwell-Pope shot 41.0 percent and 38.5 percent, respectively. He and Hield are both floor spacers who are seldom used.
Westbrook, on the other side, had the NBA’s 19th-highest usage rate last season. James was ranked 11th, while Davis was ranked 24th. That means each of LA’s new Big Three had possession of the ball. Quite a bit.
Westbrook will have to take precedence over LeBron and AD. That’s fine throughout the regular season. The playoffs, on the other hand, will provide a different set of difficulties.
Westbrook, according to James and the Lakers, is the solution.
Los Angeles attempted to trade for Lillard but were denied. Paul chose to remain in Phoenix. DeRozen settled on Chicago. Then there was Westbrook.
Everyone associated with the Lakers organization is speaking the truth. Westbrook, obviously, is a much better all-around player than Hield. However, he and Caldwell-Pope decided that spreading the court for James and Davis was the best match. The best option would have been to make that deal. The only way to know for sure is to wait and see.
Particularly in the fourth quarter, late in the game, and in the playoffs.
Basketball Reference provided all statistics.
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The Los Angeles Lakers tried pairing LeBron James with 2 different NBA stars this offseason and still unbelievably made the wrong choice with their 3rd option. Reference: damian lillardlakers.
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