Gary Payton’s stint as a member of the Los Angeles Lakers was a short one, but he still remains one of the greatest point guards in NBA history.
As such, he is able to provide a unique perspective on not only how a point guard like Russell Westbrook should play, but also his fit in LA.
And that’s precisely what Payton did this week.
During a recent appearance on Draymond Green’s ‘The Volume’ podcast, Payton offered his brutally honest thoughts on Westbrook’s fit in LA.
“I don’t think Russ is playing the way he should be playing,” Payton said.
“It’s a new thing to him from going from being the man for so long and then you got to with AD and LeBron. You got to give them the ball. He’s so much dominant on the basketball that’s he’s not doing the things that he should be doing. I think he’s thinking too much.”
Specifically, Payton also believes Westbrook and the other Lakers rely too heavily on LeBron James.
“I just think he thinks too much and they rely on LeBron so much that they are watching him,” Payton continued. “They don’t play the [Warriors] play. Like with people cut and move and do that. They are watching the basketball too much.”
Payton has never shied away from keeping it real. Whether he is settling the MJ vs. LeBron debate once and for all or simply putting Michael Jordan in his place – he always tells it how it is.
The photos speak for themselves. https://t.co/k0zuHbsZML
— Game 7 (@game7__) January 4, 2022
In that spirit, his most recent comments on Westbrook are unsurprising.
As far as Westbrook goes – the Lakers have spoken to two NBA teams about possibly trading him. Whether or not one of deals will ultimately come to fruition remains to be seen.