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LA Lakers Rumors Roundup: Franchise had discussions with Jazz and Knicks for a possible three-team trade, insider believes team will be mediocre if Russell Westbrook stays, and more - August 9th, 2022

LeBron James and Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers
LeBron James and Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers
Kunal Sethi

The LA Lakers aren't having the offseason they wanted so far. Several players have left and not many have joined. LeBron James still hasn't signed a contract extension and the Russell Westbrook saga continues as no team seems to be interested in his services.

Moreover, recent reports have suggested that Darvin Ham has full authority to bench Westbrook whenever he feels like it. While some fans were happy to hear that, the head coach should have had that control anyway, which also implies that Frank Vogel didn't. Now the franchise is apparently trusting a rookie head coach more than the one who led them to their 17th banner.

Here are a few rumors around the Purple and Gold in the last 24 hours.


Nets owner Joe Tsai's tweet gives the LA Lakers hope for landing Kyrie Irving

Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets in the 2022 NBA Play-In Tournament
Kyrie Irving of the Brooklyn Nets in the 2022 NBA Play-In Tournament

A lot of dots need to be connected but stay with us. LeBron James will sign an extension if the LA Lakers improve their roster or land Kyrie Irving. The Brooklyn Nets just had serious discussions with Kevin Durant wherein the 12-time All-Star demanded that the franchise choose between either him or the pairing of coach Steve Nash and GM Sean Marks.

Now, Nets owner Joe Tsai tweeted the following:

"Our front office and coaching staff have my support. We will make decisions in the best interest of the Brooklyn Nets."

This suggests he is siding with his coach and general manager, hence Durant's situation gets tricky. If Durant can't leave Brooklyn, then the Lakers can't offer Westbrook in exchange for Irving as KD wouldn't want to play with his former teammate. Hence, Joe Tsai's tweet could mean Durant is on his way out and Irving might then be up for grabs.

Joe Tsai Responds To Kevin Durant's Ultimatum, What It Means For The Lakers & More twitter.com/i/broadcasts/1…

Lakers insider believes the team will be bottom-tier if they hang on to Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers in action against the Washington Wizards
Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers in action against the Washington Wizards

The LA Lakers had a horrific campaign last year as they missed the play-in tournament despite being championship favorites before the season started. They couldn't overcome Russell Westbrook's liabilities on both ends of the floor and LA fans are clearly fed up with him.

Practically all trade rumors around the Lakers involve Westbrook and, as mentioned above, there is talk of benching him next season.

Lakers beat writer The Athletic's Jovan Buha, in his latest mailbag and opined on what he expects from the team if they keep Russ next season. He wrote:

"No, I don’t believe the Lakers, as currently constructed, can win a championship. I think they can certainly make the playoffs, but I expect them to be a bottom-tier playoff team if Westbrook is on the roster and playing (somewhere in the No. 6 to No. 9-seed range)."

Also Checkout:- Russell Westbrook Stats

"I expect them to be a bottom-tier playoff team if Westbrook is on the roster and playing" - Los Angeles Lakers insider gives a damning indictment of the current squad dlvr.it/SWKCYp #NBA #Basketball

Lakers explored a possible three-team trade for Westbrook with the Utah Jazz and New York Knicks

Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz against Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers
Donovan Mitchell of the Utah Jazz against Russell Westbrook of the LA Lakers

The LA Lakers, Utah Jazz and New York Knicks discussed a trade involving Russell Westbrook and Donovan Mitchell, as reported by HoopsHype's Michael Scottto. He wrote:

"The Lakers had conversations about joining the Jazz and Knicks a few weeks ago in a potential three-team trade, league sources told HoopsHype. The proposed three-team trade scenario included Westbrook going to Utah…
"Utah would send Donovan Mitchell to the Knicks, a combination of two players, including Patrick Beverley…to the Lakers, and the Jazz would receive significant draft pick compensation from the Knicks and Lakers."

On the LA Lakers side of the trade, they would part ways with Russell Westbrook and two first-round picks (2027, 2029) while receiving Patrick Beverley and another player, possibly Jordan Clarkson, Bojan Bogdanovic or Malik Beasley. Donovan Mitchell would be sent to New York in this scenario, though not Los Angeles.

Sources: The Lakers, Knicks and Jazz discussed a three-team trade with Donovan Mitchell landing in New York, Patrick Beverley and another key Jazz player to the Lakers, Russell Westbrook on the move, and draft picks to Utah. More details on @hoopshype. hoopshype.com/lists/nba-rumo…

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Q. Will Kyrie Irving end up with the LA Lakers?

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Edited by Arnav Kholkar

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