NBA Rumors: LA Lakers star and former MVP signs with Kemba Walker's agent, suggestive of potential contract buyout

LA Lakers star and former MVP signs with Kemba Walker
LA Lakers star and former MVP signs with Kemba Walker's agent
Russell Westbrook looks on at the game
Russell Westbrook looks on at the game

NBA Rumors surrounding LA Lakers superstar Russell Westbrook have been one of the most intriguing storylines of the offseason. Although recent news and rumors have moved at a snail's pace, a recent reveal by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski may see more dominoes fall.

Westbrook has been involved in trade talks with several teams. With the LA Lakers attempting to move the superstar guard, the side has entertained offers from teams across the league.

This event saw a rather interesting outcome within Westbrook's camp as the superstar parted ways with long-time agent Thad Foucher. With the two splitting up over "irreconcilable differences," it seemed more or less likely that Brodie would suit up for a different team in the coming season.

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This split could be considered the first domino. The next domino in this series could be Wojnarowski's latest reveal. The analyst reported that Russell Westbrook has signed with Jeff Schwartz of Excel Sports for his representation.

Athletes signing with agencies is not unheard of considering the dire need for representation in the league. However, the agent that Westbrook has signed with could raise some speculation into further dealings.

Jeff Schwartz has represented players such as Kemba Walker, Blake Griffin, Andre Drummond and Khris Middleton. However, a common trend in Schwartz's negotiations as of late has been big contract buyouts for his clients.

This could be seen in Walker's case with the Oklahoma City Thunder, where he left almost $20 million on the table when he was bought out. The buyout route has been a very realistic avenue for Westbrook as well. With Schwartz on board, the LA Lakers may see some developments.

What's next for Russell Westbrook and the LA Lakers?

Russell Westbrook goes up for a layup
Russell Westbrook goes up for a layup

Russell Westbrook's trade value has taken a massive hit over the last few seasons. A large reason for the split with Thad Foucher was the nature of Westbrook's recent track record.

After moving three teams in three seasons, Westbrook doesn't have the best reputation as an asset for teams. Additionally, considering the massive amount he is owed this year, teams could also be deterred from pursuing him.

Foucher believed that Westbrook should play out this season with the LA Lakers to salvage some amount of credibility. This eventually led to the split. This was more or less suggestive of Westbrook's intent to leave the Lakers organization. However, avenues for a trade have been less than hopeful.

Having been linked to the Charlotte Hornets, Indiana Pacers and the Brooklyn Nets, the LA Lakers haven't found a suitable landing spot for the superstar. Although talks with the Nets on a trade involving Kyrie Irving gathered a lot of momentum early on, negotiations have since died down.

Signing with Jeff Schwartz is very suggestive of a potential buyout deal in the works. While it doesn't necessarily confirm anything, a buyout agreement could be beneficial to both parties.

Things have moved at a snail's pace so far. However, fans may see some action as LeBron James' contract extension is due soon.

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Edited by Diptanil
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