Assessing Bleacher Report’s Russell Westbrook trade for Indiana Pacers

Jan 19, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports
Jan 19, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /
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Indiana Pacers: Malcolm Brogdon, Los Angeles Lakers: Russell Westbrook
Jan 19, 2022; Los Angeles, California, USA: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports /

Why the Los Angeles Lakers would accept B/R’s trade for Russell Westbrook

The Lakers need to find a way to trade Russell Westbrook. As many expected, the guard just did not fit with LA’s other stars like LeBron James and Anthony Davis, which played a big part in their subpar season. With James and Davis still under contract, the front office needs to bring in some pieces that fit better to help this team get right back into the contending picture, and both pieces from the Indiana Pacers fit the billing in that regard.

Considering that they almost traded for him last offseason prior to trading for Westbrook, LA should be quite familiar with Buddy Hield. The guard has proven to be one of the best 3-point shooters in the league over the past few seasons, and he had another fantastic year as he hit the second-most triples in the NBA this season. With sharpshooting like that, Hield would be perfect in this LA offense. James and Davis need to be surrounded by shooting, and adding one of the best in the business in Hield, a career 39.8 percent shooter on 7.6 attempts per game, would be a great combination on the offensive end.

Brogdon would also bring another battle-tested player to Los Angeles. Over the past three years in Indiana, the guard has averaged 18.9 points, 6.3 assists, and 5.1 rebounds per game. While his 3-point shooting is not as stellar as Hield’s, having shot 35.2 percent on 5.4 attempts per contest in that timeframe, Brogdon is also a solid outside shooter. With numbers like these, Brogdon could be the ideal third star to play alongside James and Davis, as he would be an immediate upgrade over Westbrook at the starting point guard position.

Two first round picks and a young asset like Horton-Tucker may seem like quite a lot to attach in a Westbrook trade, but if the Lakers are getting back two players like Hield and Brogdon, it would be worth it. Bringing in these two would help make the Lakers formidable on impact, helping them in their quest to return to title contention right from the jump next season.

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