The Russell Westbrook experiment hasn't worked in Los Angeles yet and I don’t know if it will ever. LeBron James's inability to play due to injury didn't help matters, but it was scary. LeBron made the decision to acquire Westbrook instead of trading for Buddy Hield, a better shooter from Sacramento.
As most people, I would love to know the thoughts of James and the Lakers when this deal was approved. It's true that all the old man jokes have been played out, but it's not a lie. Perhaps that's why James took offense to it before the season began and used social media to voice his disapproval.
On the court, Westbrook doesn't seem to be able to mesh with this team. I really want to give this thing another chance. But every time they play, the terrible fit just jumps off of the screen. They are now 5-5 after losing to the Portland Trail Blazers. Anthony Davis was forced to leave the game after only seven minutes due to a stomach infection that was not related to COVID-19. Westbrook should have taken over the game and was ready to go. Instead, the Lakers lost 15 points to Westbrook, who scored a triple-single.
The Lakers offense seems stifled whenever Russ is on court. Westbrook seems almost to be holding back, for some reason. It is understandable that James and Davis would be on the floor with Westbrook in any combination. If both of them are out, Westbrook should take control and make this team his own. Sometimes Russ can cook. Although it's a different Russ than the one above, the same principle applies.
The Lakers must find a way for Westbrook to do his thing when the big dogs are out. This team lacks chemistry. Westbrook scored 9 points against Blazers which is 10 less than his season average. Although he may need to take more time to feel the Los Angeles situation, we should see improvement as time goes on. They haven't changed much since game 1-10 this season.
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The Lakers are willing to give it some more time. However, if the group hovers around.500 at the All-Star break it may be time for you to consider other options. Call the Kings to see if Hield is still available and what it would cost to acquire his services. Rob Pelinka should speak to the Brooklyn Nets regarding a trade of Kyrie Irving for Russell Westbrook. It would be a cruel joke.
The Lakers will have to make a difficult decision soon if their chemistry and production doesn't improve. It doesn't matter if it doesn't go according to plan for Westbrook or the Lakers. LeBron will be constantly under pressure from social media, but he should be able to handle that by now.
James will have to admit that he wasn't able to win with anyone if he wants the fifth ring and Finals MVP. With the current Lakers' structure, it doesn't seem possible for James win a title. Although it will be difficult to admit, Westbrook will have the final say if James wants to win another ring in LA.