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Los Angeles Lakers discussing big Russell Westbrook trade with the Utah Jazz

The Los Angeles Lakers and Utah Jazz are reportedly discussing a trade centering Russell Westbrook. What would a potential deal look like?

NBA: Los Angeles Lakers at Utah Jazz

The Los Angeles Lakers currently sit with a 25-28 record in 12th place within the Western Conference. Despite already moving guard Kendrick Nunn for forward Rui Hachimura, Los Angeles will still be active with the trade deadline approaching.

According to Bleacher Report’s Chris Haynes, the Lakers and Utah Jazz have had exploratory talks centered around potential Sixth Man of the Year award winner Russell Westbrook. To this point, the Lakers are talking to a majority of teams for potential options.

Westbrook, 34, has transitioned from being a starter to the first player off of the bench each game. Even though he has been successful, the team’s best pathway to a significant move is unloading his contract in the next week.

Related: Los Angeles Lakers reportedly targeting one-time All-Star ahead of trade deadline

Evaluating what the Los Angeles Lakers could receive from the Utah Jazz for Russell Westbrook

Los Angeles Lakers/Russell Westbrook
Jan 30, 2023; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook (0) sits on the bench during warm ups before a game against the Brooklyn Nets at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Lakers should be very motivated to move Westbrook as he has an expiring contract which will be beneficial to teams looking to create cap space this offseason. Plus, the team would lose Westbrook for no value.

Enter the Jazz. The organization is currently in the play-in tournament and could benefit from adding the former MVP winner. Plus, it could create more cap room this summer if a trade was completed.

So, what is the value for one of the NBA’s best bench players at 34 years old on an expiring contract? It seems pretty likely that guard Mike Conley could be among those on the move to Los Angeles.

Westbrook’s cap hit for the 2022-23 season is $47.06 million which is the highest on the team. Conley has Utah’s highest cap hit at $22.68 million so it would almost be a guarantee that he is involved.

From there, the Jazz could include guard Malik Beasley and forward Jarred Vanderbilt to reach the cap hit requirements. The Lakers would then send two first-round picks in 2027 and 2029 to complete the deal.

This would be the ideal proposal for a Wesbtrook/Jazz trade…

  • Utah Jazz: Russell Westbrook, 2027 and 2029 first-round picks
  • Los Angeles Lakers: Mike Conley, Malik Beasley, Jarred Vanderbilt

The Lakers would be able to acquire Conley to replace Westbrook while adding Beasley and Vanderbilt for long-term plans. Meanwhile, the Jazz would acquire the potential Sixth Man of the Year award winner and two potentially valuable first-round picks.

It would allow Utah to create extra cap space this summer. At the same time, it would limit Los Angeles’ cap space but give them two young players that could be developed and add youth to the team.

The NBA Trade Deadline is under one week away and the rumors will continue to fly around. Stay tuned for the latest NBA coverage on Sportsnaut.

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