With less than 24 hours before the 2023 NBA trade deadline, the Los Angeles Lakers have just struck a deal with the Minnesota Timberwolves and Utah Jazz that will send:
- D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley, and Jarred Vanderbilt to Los Angeles
- Russell Westbrook, Juan Toscano-Anderson, Damian Jones, and a protected 2027 first round pick to Salt Lake City
- Mike Conley, Nickeil Alexander-Walker, the lessor of either Washington or Memphis’s 2024 second round pick, and 2025 and 2026 second round picks via Utah to Minnesota
D’Angelo Russell is currently averaging 17.9 points, 6.2 assists, and 3.1 rebounds on 46.5% efficiency, and will be sent back to the team that drafted him in 2015. He will go alongside two of his old Timberwolves teammates in Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt. The Los Angeles Lakers just heavily improved their roster for a playoff run, just a night after LeBron James broke the NBA scoring record. Rob Pelinka and the Lakers front office decided it was time to stop messing around, and secured an established star point guard and two fantastic role players who have shown their ability to thrive alongside stars.
As of now, this seems to be a highway robbery for the Lakers, giving up a protected first-round pick, Russell Westbrook, Juan Toscano-Anderson, and Damian Jones in total for a significantly better return. Sitting at 25-30, holding the 13th seed in the Western Conference, the entire NBA world knew there was a much-needed change if the Lakers even wanted a shot at the play-in tournament…And that much-needed change has surely arrived.