NBA CEO Proposes Trade Lakers Pistons That Include Russell Westbrook, Kimba Walker And Others

As the 2022-23 NBA season approaches, people across the league are still trying to figure out the Los Angeles Lakers’ plans regarding former major player Russell Westbrook.

At times this season, a trade that sends Westbrook to a rival team has seemed imminent. However, no such deal has been concluded yet. At the moment, the two most likely trading partners appear to be the Utah Jazz and the Indiana Pacers.

However, an NBA executive recently created another team that could be an option for the Lakers as a business partner: the Detroit Pistons.

The CEO spoke with Sean Daveney of Heavy.com to break down the potential move.

“I’d be willing to step in if I were the Pistons,” said the CEO. “I want to pick 2027 unprotected, take back Russell Westbrook and send you all my veterans, all my malice. Right now Detroit is taking a wait-only approach, playing with the guys they got from [New York] Knicks and trading during the season. This team needs more tanks, they need it [Victor] Wembanyama, or at least they should be in the mix.”

Then the CEO broke down some of the players the Pistons could send for Westbrook.

Send Alec Burkes, Nerlence Noel and [Kelly] Olenik and Kimba [Walker]. The Lakers were doing a 1v4 deal there, so they would have to move the players. …you have some tradable contracts, and you have some veterans that you can draw on to dig deeper. I took it on both sides.”

The deal will be successful from a financial point of view.

At first glance, it’s hard to imagine how any of these players would be a major contributor to a championship-winning team. While a championship may seem highly unlikely for the Lakers this season, that is still the goal.

However, it doesn’t look as if the deal won’t help the Lakers at all. First, they would kick Westbrook out of the squad, which could improve morale inside the locker room. Regardless, it’s not as if the players they’re going to gain don’t have strengths.

Burks averaged 11.7 points and 4.9 rebounds per game last season. It’s a tough and versatile winger who can also extend the land with his shooting ability.

Noel is a solid defender, and while his numbers don’t jump off the stats list, he could be a great defensive addition alongside Anthony Davis in the front area. Oleinik is a stalwart who averaged 9.1 points, 4.4 rebounds and 2.8 assists per game last season.

As for Walker, he was once a superstar, but he has taken many steps back since his body apparently began to fall apart due to the wear and tear of his career. However, if he can stay healthy, he can serve as a potential competitor in the starting point guard position.

With that in mind, Walker is currently seen as a takeover candidate for the Pistons. It was previously reported that the two sides were in the process of finalizing the acquisition deal.

However, Walker has not been officially bought out of his contract yet. According to James L. Edwards III of The Athletic, it is very likely that things are not finalized because Walker may be unsure “that he can sign with another team and make up some of the money he brought back”.

As for the Pistons, it’s not entirely clear why Westbrook would be an attractive addition, and picking the Lakers in the first round of 2027 may not be enough to get them to bite.

The Pistons are a young and rebuilding team, and they have Kid Cunningham as their primary goalkeeper for the future. Getting Westbrook in the mix can do more harm than good for the young professional.

Still, it looks like the Pistons may be a team watching going forward as the Lakers continue to try to find a business partner for Westbrook.



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