Los Angeles Lakers superstar Anthony Davis sympathizes with Russell Westbrook and James Harden.
The disgruntled Rockets stars have suggested they want out of Houston while questioning both the direction and culture of the franchise.
Davis said during an interview with Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports he believes the superstar duo just wants to win, much as he did when he requested a trade from the New Orleans Pelicans.
In Part 2 of @YahooSports’ “Posted Up w. C. Haynes” featuring Anthony Davis, he talks about what James Harden and Russell Westbrook are going through in wanting out of Houston.
“I think those guys just want to win. I was in that situation last year.”
🎥: https://t.co/2AwlRZwt9u pic.twitter.com/WCHkfpceZe
— Chris Haynes (@ChrisBHaynes) November 17, 2020
The Rockets have done their fair share of winning during the regular season, but they have not been able to get in the hump in the playoffs.
Houston has lost in the conference semifinals in each of the past two seasons, with the 2019-20 campaign coming to an end at the hands of Davis’ Lakers in five games. Meanwhile, neither Harden nor Westbrook have made it to the NBA Finals since 2012, when they both still played for the Oklahoma City Thunder.
Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN reported late Monday night Harden turned down an extension worth over $50 million per year, which would have made him the highest-paid player in the NBA in terms of annual average value. Westbrook is already making over $40 million per year.
But Davis said winning is the ultimate priority, especially for established guys like The Beard and The Brodie.
Davis himself is in the midst of contract negotiations after declining his player option for the 2020-21 season. However, it is all but guaranteed he will return to the Lakers. It just depends on what kind of deal he wants to sign.
The situation in Houston appears far more perilous. There is no telling whether Harden or Westbrook will be on the roster next year, especially after the Rockets traded Robert Covington on Monday.
Regardless, Davis understands the insatiable desire to win can be an overpowering force.