The Los Angeles Lakers are reportedly considering trading All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook.
Even though there are big downsides to how he plays, it might not be the best idea to trade Westbrook away.
Through the first 29 games of this season, he has averaged 19.6 points, 8.4 assists and 7.8 rebounds on 45.1% shooting, which is third best for his career so far, alongside Anthony Davis and LeBron James.
Even though Westbrook’s turnovers, and at times bad shot selection, is a big downside for the team, his upside is just that much greater.
Westbrook was the 2016-2017 NBA Most Valuable Player where he led a bad Oklahoma City Thunder team to the play offs while becoming only the second player in history to average a triple double in the regular season.
Even though he tends to turn the ball over a lot, Westbrook is still a very good playmaker and can drive to the rim effectively.
With the Los Angeles Lakers average age being 30 (the highest in the NBA this season), another thing Westbrook brings to this team is a great burst of energy.
This will help the Lakers when they need to up the tempo and when they need to get to the basket quickly or make some space to free up shooters.
Finally, Westbrook has not been at the root of all the Lakers problems this season.
The main Lakers duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis have not had their best seasons so far for multiple reasons.
Anthony Davis has seen his three-point shot drop to one of the worst in NBA history and his free throw shooting has dropped down as well.
With LeBron James, he has only played 17 of the 29 games so far this season. In the absence of James, the Lakers are now a sixth seed in the Western Conference.
Finally, we are not even half way through the season and the team has not been able to gain the required chemistry to play to their full potential, so trading Westbrook would reset that and the Lakers would have to readjust just under halfway through the season.
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