In Los Angeles, the pairing of two unlikely teammates is causing a stir within Lakers Nation. While most fans were hoping to swap Russell Westbrook for offensive superstar Kyrie Irving, that deal is no longer on the table, and everyone within the organization is trying their best to make it work.
After hearing the prognosis on the situation in Brooklyn, Lakers GM Rob Pelinka responded with a move, trading for veteran guard Patrick Beverley from the Utah Jazz.
The deal has essentially paired two ex-rivals together, and it is sure to make things interesting for all parties involved.
During his introductory press conference on Tuesday, though, Lakers fans caught some glimpses of the backcourt duo together when Russ threw Beverley a towel at some point during the night. They seemed to be on good terms.
After a nightmarish campaign, the Lakers entered the summer with a whole host of unanswered questions. Could they find a new home for Westbrook? Can they count on more healthy seasons for Anthony Davis?
While some of those questions have not yet been addressed, we know that the Purple and Gold are showing some major urgency to make amends for their failures -- and Beverley should help them do that.
Tuesday, as Beverley officially was introduced in a press conference as a member of the Lakers, Westbrook was the lone player in the room. And as sweat poured down the face of Beverley, fresh from an on-court workout, it was Westbrook tossing him a towel.
“First dime of the year,” Beverley joked.
With training camp three weeks away, Beverley, Westbrook and coach Darvin Ham all seemed committed to making things work — with Ham saying he’s not afraid to use a starting backcourt of Beverley and Westbrook if the two “defend.”
“What I can add is a willingness to be prepared every day,” Beverley said. “I’m a very detailed man. Preparation is really big for me.”
The West is absolutely stacked with talent, and this season will prove to be especially difficult for the Lakers, who are another year older and another step slower than they were before.
And while Patrick Beverley is far from the solution to all of L.A.'s problems, his game and mindset as a player could really help make an impact in the locker room.