Jalen Rose Cites One Area Where Russell Westbrook Will Help LeBron James and Lakers the Most

Published 08/04/2021, 1:01 AM EDT
May 8, 2021; Indianapolis, Indiana, USA; Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) drives to the basket during the second half of an NBA basketball game against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. Mandatory Credit: Doug McSchooler-USA TODAY Sports


In the last one week, the Lakers have gone from owning just the #22 draft pick to now housing a powerhouse of time-tested talents. With their recent acquisitions, Rob Pelinka & Jeanie Buss have sent out an indirect message that they’re coming back stronger than ever. 

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Now, the critics of the Lake Show might hate them for stacking All-Stars. But that’s exactly what the Nets did last summer, and that is how the most valuable franchises run their legacy. Still, what forced the LA-based organization to grow so desperate in building a win-now title-contending squad?

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Where exactly does the trade for Russell Westbrook help the Lakers?

In a recent interview, former NBA player Jalen Rose analyzed the acquisition by various franchises. When he came to the Lakers, he pinpointed on exactly one area where the Lakers needed help. But no, he did not talk about the shooting issues that crippled the Lake Show last year.

The 48-YO noted that the 2020-21 regular season was a clear representation of the Lakers’ aging issue. He claimed that “Solely because of their age, they’ll likely not have a number 1/2 seed…”

Last year, LeBron James missed 27 regular-season games for the second time (both with the Lakers) in his 18-year career. That led to the defending champions participating in the play-in tournament and eventually dropping out in Round 1. 

Just as Jalen added, “AD gets injured, they get bounced in the first round. This is where you add Russ though. Put the ages back up there. This is the main reason why you have Russ. Because having him, he don’t play his age, not during the regular season.”

Jun 3, 2021; Anthony Davis, LeBron James, and coach Frank Vogel react during game six in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs against the Suns at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports
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What else does Russ bring to the table?

After Dennis Schroder’s over-promise and under-delivery in the last season, the Lakers needed a trustworthy point guard who could score every night. That’s where the credibility of Russell Westbrook comes in. The star has insanely averaged a triple-double in four NBA seasons and his two-way dominance eases the burden off the Lakers duo.

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The sports analyst further detailed, “He is gonna be putting super-sized triple-doubles, especially when their #1 and #2 LeBron or AD is out. And if both of them are out, Russ can win player of the week that week.”

Although Russ is four years older than AD, he has remained away from injuries all his career. Plus, the fact that he has his hometown in LA and that he badly wants to win a ring, makes him an even better choice.

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So as per your opinion, was this the best trade possible? Help us know in the comments section below.

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Sourabh Singh

1629 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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