Russell Westbrook Headed Home to Los Angeles in Blockbuster Trade

The Washington Wizards and Los Angeles Lakers agreed to a trade on Thursday that will land Russell Westbrook with his hometown Lakers, while the Wizards will acquire Kyle Kuzma, Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, Montrezl Harrell and the No. 22 pick in Thursday’s NBA draft.

Rumors began to fly last week that the Lakers were looking at landing the veteran star point guard, but the chatter amped up on Thursday.

Washington will toss a few second-round picks into the deal as well, according to reports.

The trade will equal a homecoming for Westbrook, who grew up in Southern California. He attended Leuzinger High School in Lawndale, CA, before attending UCLA for two seasons.

He was selected fourth overall in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Seattle Supersonics, who relocated and became the Oklahoma City Thunder less than a week after the draft.

In his 11-year career, Westbrook is a nine-time All-Star, two-time All-NBA First Team selection, and was named NBA MVP in 2017. He has twice led the league in scoring and thrice led it in assists.

He is also one of two players in the league’s history to average a triple-double in a season (Oscar Robertson), a feat Westbrook has accomplished four times, including this past season in Washington, his first year with the franchise.

Westbrook is the all-time leader in triple-doubles with 184, and last season, he averaged 22.2 points, 11.7 assists and 11.5 rebounds.

For the Wizards, the centerpiece of the deal appears to be Kuzma, who averaged 12.9 points and 6.1 rebounds in his fourth season with the Lakers this past year. As a rookie in 2017-18, he put up 16.1 points and 6.3 rebounds for Los Angeles, and in his sophomore season, he averaged a career-high 18.7 points, before dipping to 12.8 points in 2019-20.

Washington will also receive the 2019-20 Sixth Man of the Year in Harrell, who registered 13.5 points and 6.2 rebounds for the Lakers, a year after putting up 18.6 points and 7.1 rebounds for the in-town rival LA Clippers.

Rounding out the trio of players is Caldwell-Pope, who averaged 9.7 points and shot 41% from 3 last season.

Colin Cowherd – not known as the biggest Westbrook fan – said that the trade is a win for the Lakers considering they didn’t give up much to land a once-in-a-lifetime talent, regardless of his inconsistency.

“Westbrook can give you occasional moments of great. The other guys can’t, and that’s what wins championships.”

Here’s how the Twitter-sphere reacted to the blockbuster trade, beginning with Lakers legend Magic Johnson, who loved the deal, and  Skip Bayless, who is not a fan of the swap:


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