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D’Angelo Russell doesn’t want to be remembered as a Laker

d'angelo russell

Brooklyn Nets guard D’Angelo Russell has certainly changed from the player he used to be. In 2015, Russell was drafted to become the starting point guard of the Los Angeles Lakers. What transpired down the road was a bitterly-disappointing rookie and sophomore seasons from the former Lakers guard.

Soon, the team made plans to draft Lonzo Ball, a less talented offensive player but gifted passer and floor general. Those plans soon came true when the Lakers actually drafted him in 2017. Afterward, Los Angeles traded Russell to the Nets. Magic Johnson cited the traded as a transition to draft a “leader”, according to an article a few months ago by Baxter Holmes of ESPN.

“D’Angelo is an excellent player. He has the talent to be an All-Star. We want to thank him for what he did for us. But what I needed was a leader. I needed somebody also that can make the other players better and also [somebody] that players want to play with.”

These comments blindsided Russell, whom many people believe was traded unexpectedly. Russell has made it clear that he no longer associates with the Lakers and does not want to be remembered as a former player for the team, despite spending his first two seasons there, per Marc J. Spears of ESPN.

“I don’t want L.A. to be any part of my legacy as far as what I left behind. Guys don’t know that Chauncey Billups was drafted by the Celtics. Guys remember him from Denver and Detroit, stuff like that.”

Russell is obviously still bitter about his departure from the Lakers, but at least he has found a home in Brooklyn. The former lottery pick now has a big task on his hands. He has to work hard and become a better player and “leader” for the Nets if he is going to build his own identity that is separate from the Lakers organization.