Skip to main content

NBA exec suggests Los Angeles Lakers and Detriot Pistons could be a match in Russell Westbrook trade

One NBA executive believes the Detroit Pistons should get the Los Angeles Lakers on the phone about a trade for Russell Westbrook, with the goal of tanking to land a lottery pick in the 2023 NBA Draft.

While the Lakers have reportedly tried to move Westbrook after a disappointing debut season in LA, they have come up empty on finding a trade partner. The one-time league MVP is set to make $47 million in the upcoming season, and after a performance last season where he put up some of his worst numbers over the last decade, Westbrook is nearly untradeable. Yet that hasn’t stopped the team from giving it the old college try.

Related: Lakers reportedly could swing another trade with Utah Jazz for an impact player soon

The Lakers reportedly shopped the 33-year-old to the Brooklyn Nets before they took Kyrie Irving off the market, offered him to Indiana in a deal for Myles Turner and Buddy Hield, and his name has been linked in a possible deal with the Utah Jazz. It’s been reported that the only way the team could move Westbrook would be by including a future unprotected first-round draft pick. And the team’s selection in 2027 is something that would appeal to many teams.

NBA exec suggests useful ‘junk’ trade for Los Angeles Lakers

los angeles lakers, russell westbrook
Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

On Thursday, an anonymous NBA executive spoke to Heavy.com about the Lakers Westbrook situation and suggested the rebuilding Detroit Pistons might be a worthy trade partner for Los Angeles.

  • Russell Westbrook stats (2021-2022): 18.5 PPG, 7.4 RPG, 7.1 APG, 1.0 SPG

“I’d be willing to get involved if I were the Pistons. I would want that 2027 pick unprotected, and take back Russell Westbrook and send you all my veterans, all my junk. Right now, Detroit is taking the approach of just waiting, playing with the guys they got from the Knicks, and trading during the season. That team needs to tank some more, they need [French prospect Victor Wembanyama], or at least they need to be in the mix.”

While “junk” might not seem appealing to Lakers fans, the executive suggested what the return for Westbrook could be, and it is players that would certainly strengthen the Lakers’ 2022-2023 bench and depth. “Send back Alec Burks and Nerlens Noel and [Kelly] Olynyk and Kemba [Walker]. The Lakers would be doing a 1-for-4 deal there, so they’d have to move guys around. … You have some tradeable contracts, and you have some veterans you can use for depth. I’d consider it on both sides.”