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Lakers trade Russell Westbrook, first-rounder to Jazz for Timberwolves’ Malik Beasley, D’Angelo Russell, and Jarred Vanderbilt

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The Los Angeles Lakers traded Russell Westbrook, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Damian Jones, and a lightly protected first-round draft pick to the Utah Jazz for Minnesota Timberwolves’ Malik Beasley, D’Angelo Russell, and Jarred Vanderbilt. Utah also dealt Mike Conley and Nickeil Alexander-Walker to the Wolves.

Additionally, Minnesota will receive the 2024 lesser of the Washington Wizards-Memphis Grizzlies second-round pick and the 2025 and 2026 second-round picks via Utah, according to ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski.

Upon further review of a few NBA betting sites, the Lakers now have 11th-shortest odds to win the championship. Some sportsbooks are showing greater odds for the Memphis Grizzlies and Dallas Mavericks.

Through 52 appearances this season with the Lakers, Westbrook averaged 15.9 points, 6.2 rebounds, 7.5 assists, and 1.0 steal per game. Plus, he shot 41.7% from the field, 29.6% beyond the arc, and 65.5% at the foul line.

Lakers coach Darvin Ham had the triple-double king come off the bench four games into the season. However, Westbrook was never the same player offense-wise. The nine-time All-Star averaged the fewest points per game with Los Angeles this season since his rookie 2008-09 season.

Lakers trade Russell Westbrook, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Damian Jones, and a first-round draft pack to Jazz for Timberwolves’ Malik Beasley, D’Angelo Russell, and Jarred Vanderbilt

Mike Conley to Minnesota is a bit of a question mark. If this trade is another disappointment, Timberwolves G.M. Tim Connelly could be on the hot seat. During the 2022 offseason, the Jazz traded Rudy Gobert to the Wolves for Beasley, Patrick Beverley, Leandro Bolmaro, Walker Kessler, Vanderbilt, and five first-rounders (2023, 2025-27, 2029).

Conley averaged 10.7 points, 2.5 boards, a career-high 7.7 assists, and 1.0 steal through 43 appearances this season with the Jazz. Last Friday, in Utah’s 115-108 loss against the Atlanta Hawks, the 16-year veteran guard scored a season-high 20 points in 30 minutes played. It seems the Lakers might be the winners of this trade.

Although Westbrook has lost a step offensively, he can still help a struggling team. Having said that, the nine-time All-NBA member is not worth $47 million right now. Of course, this is part of the five-year, $205 million contract Westbrook inked with the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2017.

Since then, the guard has been traded four times. LeBron James and the Lakers were expecting more out of the UCLA product. Westbrook is now the second player in NBA history to get dealt four times after winning MVP, joining Bob McAdoo.

James is a Basketball Insiders contributor. He earned his bachelor's degree in English and Creative Writing at Southern New Hampshire University. James enjoys watching sports and helping gamblers win money.

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