D’Angelo Russell played an instrumental role in the Los Angeles Lakers making it to the Western Conference Finals this year.
Both at the end of the regular season and throughout the first two rounds of the playoffs, Russell did enough to justify L.A.’s decision to ship off Russell Westbrook and acquire him.
Unfortunately, the 27-year-old has been totally useless against the Denver Nuggets.
Russell has been such a liability on both sides of the floor, in fact, that both Denver’s players and coaches have openly mocked him over it.
This week NBA insider Sam Amick cast some doubt on Russell’s future with the Lakers.
“There’s a strong argument to be made that Russell should have lost his starting job early on in this series, as it was quickly evident the Nuggets’ plan of attacking him on the defensive end was sparking their historically good offense,” he wrote.
“Add in the fact that Russell has been unable to provide the scoring punch that made him such a good fit in these past few months, and it’s been the kind of unmitigated disaster that will likely make free-agency discussions with the Lakers far more complicated than most had expected just a few weeks ago.”
Russell clearly loves Los Angeles. So does his girlfriend. But it is hard to see the Lakers paying him the sort of money he clearly wants in the offseason based on how he played against the Nuggets.
Further complicating matters is that over the past few days another option has presented itself as a possible solution to the Lakers’ point guard woes.
Looks like Bronny had a good time at prom. https://t.co/X2DxR8AMsX
— Game 7 (@game7__) May 22, 2023
This is going to be a very consequential summer for all parties involved.
Will the Lakers ultimately opt to bring Russell back after his dud of a series against the Nuggets? Time will tell.