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Examining the irony of the Patrick Beverley trade for the Los Angeles Lakers and his role in 2022-’23

Joaquin Ruiz
Patrick Beverley, Los Angeles Lakers
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

The Los Angeles Lakers trade for Patrick Beverley both strengthened the roster for the 2022-’23 NBA season and provided the basketball world with another laugh at a move that can be best described as ironic.

From a basketball standpoint, the Lakers upgraded their roster and are adding a lockdown defender, a 3-point shooter, and an experienced voice to lead the locker room. Neither Stanley Johnson nor Talen Horton-Tucker would move the needle for Los Angeles this season, making it a logical trade for the organization.

However, the move goes beyond the pure basketball impact and serves as another reminder of the Lakers’ chaos. Beverley lived in the Lakers’ heads for years, tormenting them as the Los Angeles Clippers guard.

Related: Winners, losers from Patrick Beverley trade to the Los Angeles Lakers

Even last season with the Minnesota Timberwolves, the 6-footer harasses Los Angeles and found joy in going after Russell Westbrook.

Instantly a top player on the Lakers right now, Beverley returns to Los Angeles being greeted by a fanbase that despised him for years. Often on Twitter, the former All-NBA defender would see a heavy amount of backlash from the Laker faithful due to his trash talk and feisty play opposite future Hall of Famers Lebron James and Anthony Davis.

“I used to hate Patrick Beverly when he played against my Lakers lol but now I love him because he’s on our team and he’s going to help my Lakers get to the playoffs!”

– Magic Johnson on Twitter

Reflecting on Beverley’s last stay in Los Angeles, it’s easy to see why some Lakers fans are even deleting their old tweets about the pesky guard who has a history with Westbrook.

Looking back on Beverley’s run with the Clippers

NBA: Houston Rockets at Los Angeles Clippers
Kiyoshi Mio-USA TODAY Sports

Traded alongside Lou Williams and Montrezl Harrell in the infamous 2017 Chris Paul trade with the Houston Rockets, Beverley earned the reputation of being a culture changer. After playing overseas and in Houston, he finally earned the opportunity to lead a team — fully taking advantage of the chance.

  • Patrick Beverley stats (Los Angeles Clippers: 8 PPG, 4.1 RPG, 4.6 APG, 1.2 SPG

Across 144 games from 2017-’21, the ex-Arkansas Razorback earned NBA All-Defensive Team honors in 2017 and All-Defensive Second Team honors in 2020. He earned his reputation as a tenacious defender, causing opponents to commit technicals and sparking outbursts at critical moments.

Most importantly, he gave the Clippers a new, tough identity. Different from Lob City, Beverley transcended a once whiny organization to a top-tier destination, luring free agents from across the hall and the entire league.

As a Clipper, he’d say things like “I think this team was put together not just to make it to the playoffs. I believe, you guys believe this team was put together to win the championship,” per The Athletic.

His confidence is his best trait and has positively affected his teammates over the course of his career, now aiming to do the same on his old arena floor.

Expectations for Patrick Beverley with Los Angeles Lakers

NBA: Minnesota Timberwolves at Los Angeles Lakers
Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

As mentioned earlier, Beverley is a complementary hooper who can knock down shots behind the arc while guarding the other team’s best guards and forwards. He’ll fit in much nicer next to Lebron and AD, as he doesn’t need the ball in his hands to be effective, nor does he have an ego.

Unfortunately, there’s already a problem with the team’s latest acquisition — he and Westbrook heavily dislike each other, continuing beef for years. Though, it should be noted Beverley has made the attempt to smooth over the cracks and believes Westbrook rebounds this year.

Related: Los Angeles Lakers not interested in Julius Randle trade

The Lakers’ newest defender is a sore on every team’s side (that isn’t his own) and will contribute right away. Expect the Lakers to move on from Westbrook, considering they found the perfect someone to pair with their superstar duo. Beverley will become a fan favorite in no time in his new threads, causing fans to forget about the split with Horton-Tucker.