Before Russell Westbrook joined the Los Angeles Lakers, the 2020 NBA champions almost had a deal done for Sacramento Kings sharpshooter Buddy Hield, according to Zach Lowe of ESPN.
The Lakers were prepared to send Kyle Kuzma and Montrezl Harrell to Sacramento in exchange for Hield, but as Lowe noted, the Westbrook deal “came together fast.” Instead, LA shipped off Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Harrell, and a first-round pick to the Washington Wizards in exchange for Russ, who will form a Big 3 in Los Angeles alongside LeBron James and Anthony Davis.
Hield, however, could’ve been a decent fit with the Lakers. He’s a very efficient shooter, draining 40.6% of his career three-point attempts. That was a big problem for LA in the postseason as well where they struggled to shoot the ball.
In Westbrook though, the Lakers get a versatile offensive threat who literally averaged a triple-double last season with 22.2 points, 11.5 boards, and 11.7 assists. He will help take the offensive load off of LeBron and is eager as ever to finally win an NBA title.
In the end, the Lakers got the right man. While Westbrook’s decision-making is questionable at times, there’s no doubt he will be an impact player for Frank Vogel’s squad. Hield meanwhile, could still be on the move but it’s also possible he remains with the Kings.