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RUMOR: 3 teams involved in trade talks with Lakers for Russell Westbrook, draft capital

Russell Westbrook, Lakers

While 2022 NBA Free Agency is winding down, there are still a number of star players who could be traded before the 2022-23 season begins. Among them is Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook, who struggled in his first campaign with the team.

Right now, there are no serious talks for Russ. However, the Indiana Pacers, New York Knicks, and Utah Jazz are the three clubs most interested in him, though they’re more interested in the draft capital that would come along with him.

Per Shams Charania of The Athletic, “Utah, New York, and Indiana are among the teams who have discussed deals with the Lakers involving Russell Westbrook and draft capital, sources said. There appears no deal imminent in those conversations — as the overall trade market plays out over the next two months of the offseason.”

Surprisingly, the Nets are on not on that list even though they’ve been heavily linked to a trade for Kyrie Irving. LeBron James reportedly wants to reunite with his former teammate, and you’d have to believe Russell Westbrook would be included in that package. Brooklyn did actively engage in talks with the Lakers, but nothing materialized.

LA head coach Darvin Ham insists Westbrook is a big part of his plans for the upcoming season and has the utmost confidence he can play a crucial part for this franchise. But, there are others who believe LeBron is done with Russ. If Summer League was any indication, where they sat on opposite ends of the court, it could be true. It’s hard to really know.

At this point, possible trades with teams like the Pacers are at a standstill until the Lakers know for sure that a trade for Irving is out of the picture.

Russell Westbrook is set to be paid $47 million in 2022-23 after exercising his player option.