The Los Angeles Lakers have not had a particularly active offseason thus far, but that hasn’t kept them from dominating headlines. While their biggest acquisition to this point has been Lonnie Walker IV on the mid-level, they have found themselves constantly in rumors because of the status of Russell Westbrook.
Westbrook has been in trade rumors since before the February deadline, but the Lakers have been insistent on not wanting to attach a first round pick to him just to deal the disgruntled point guard away. L.A. remains hopeful that they’ll be able to acquire a helpful player in return for Westbrook, and are publicly speaking as though they’re willing to play out this next season with him on board, with new head coach Darvin Ham talking up Russ at every opportunity in an effort to reconcile with the star who felt alienated by Frank Vogel and the previous Lakers staff.
Still, there’s plenty of buzz about Westbrook trade rumors, from discussions with the Pacers about a Buddy Hield swap — which is made all the more interesting by the fact that they traded for Westbrook instead of Hield last summer — to the much rumored Kyrie Irving for Russ trade talks with Brooklyn. To this point, none of that has come to fruition and if that remains the case going into this season, they’re going to have to get everyone on the same page moving forward. While there was plenty of chatter about Russ and LeBron James not interacting at Summer League while they watched the Lakers in Vegas, those two, plus Anthony Davis, reportedly had a call earlier this month to talk through some things and reaffirm that if they’re all in L.A. to start next season, they’ll do what it takes to try and win a title, per Yahoo’s Chris Haynes
The Los Angeles Lakers’ Big 3 of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook huddled up on a phone conversation the first weekend of NBA Summer League in Las Vegas with each expressing their commitment to one another and vowing to make it work, league sources told Yahoo Sports.
While the uncertainty of Westbrook’s future with the Lakers remains, the conversation was organized to make sure all three were on the same page as long as they’re joined together in their pursuit of a championship, sources said.
It still feels notable that this conversation took place over the phone and not in person considering James and Westbrook were in the same place at the same time, but there is at least some dialogue happening between the three stars right now which is a mild positive for Lakers fans. This isn’t exactly a revelatory report in that Haynes is quick to note it did nothing to take Westbrook off the market, but it’s better than there being a complete divide among the stars.