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NBA Insider Says Lakers Are "Strongly Against" Sending Russell Westbrook Home If They Can't Trade Him

The Lakers Are Reportedly 'Still More Likely Than Not' To Trade Russell Westbrook Before The Start Of The Season

Russell Westbrook had a tough season with the Los Angeles Lakers, often struggling as the No. 3 option behind LeBron James and Anthony Davis. He has been known as a high-usage player throughout his career, and it is easy to see why Westbrook was a bad fit for the Lakers.

There have been a lot of trade rumors surrounding Russell Westbrook, and it seems as though the Los Angeles Lakers are actively shopping him. An NBA insider previously reported that they could send him to the Utah Jazz in exchange for Mike Conley and a first-round pick.

There will be some chatter about a Westbrook/first-rounder for Conley, but Conley's deal is through 2023-24, albeit partially guaranteed.

Though the Los Angeles Lakers are clearly in talks about potential Russell Westbrook trades, there is also a chance that he ends up staying on the roster. Not all hypothetical trades end up happening.

Marc Stein Reveals Lakers Don't Want To Pay Russell Westbrook To Sit Out

If Russell Westbrook doesn't get moved, we can expect him to get good minutes on the Los Angeles Lakers. Though Russell Westbrook may no longer be an MVP-caliber player, he can definitely still be a contributor to the Los Angeles Lakers next season.

Some have suggested that the Los Angeles Lakers could pay Russell Westbrook to sit out next season if he ends up staying on the roster. However, a recent report by NBA insider Marc Stein revealed that they are "strongly against" doing that if Westbrook remains on the roster.

Two well-placed sources have expressed to me with even greater conviction that the Lakers lean very strongly against the concept of sending Westbrook home a la John Wall in Houston last season in the event that they can't find a trade for him. 

There is no doubt that the Los Angeles Lakers paying a solid player like Russell Westbrook to sit out would be counterproductive to the team's ultimate goal of winning a championship next season. Obviously, Russell Westbrook can still have a positive impact on the team if he is put in the right role by coach Darvin Ham.

Hopefully, we see Russell Westbrook have a bounce-back season, no matter where he ends up. He received a lot of hate from fans last season, but perhaps we'll see Westbrook shut down all the negativity by suiting up and playing at a high level next year.