Lakers Patrick Beverley Russell Westbrook
Lakers Patrick Beverley Russell Westbrook Source: SBNATION

The Los Angeles Lakers traded Russell Westbrook and Patrick Beverley last February to make some big changes in the roster. And it sure did pay off. The LA side reached the Western Conference Finals. Nobody in February thought the Purple and Gold Army could even make the postseason. In the previous season, the LA side had missed the postseason due to a number of injuries to key players like the duo of LeBron James and Anthony Davis. The history was about to repeat itself if it was not for Rob Pelinka and the front office making crucial changes right before the trade deadline in February.

Initially, the front office had plans to win titles with the star trio of LeBron James, Anthony Davis, and Russell Westbrook. However, soon, the front office realized that it was not going to happen with significant changes. Albeit, some players like Austin Reaves defended Russell Westbrook. Recently, on the Gilbert Arena’s podcast, former Lakers player Patrick Beverley mentioned Russell Westbrook was the heartbeat of the team.


Patrick Beverley Doesn’t Think LA Side Handled The Russell Westbrook Situation Well

Darvin Ham Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook Darvin Ham Source: Bleacher Report

Pat Bev was Westbrook’s teammate on the Lakers roster for about five months. They were not very good friends prior to playing for the Lakers. However, last season, they became friends. Moreover, Patrick Beverley heated up the conversation on the podcast, saying he did not like the idea of a player of Russell’s caliber coming off the bench. Moreover, Patrick Beverley states that the team must see it does not overmanage from a coaching standpoint.

Adding to that, Beverly mentioned he thought it was unfair on Russell Westbrook because the decision to trade him came up after his performance in the previous season. There were a lot of underlying hints about the feud between Russell Westbrook and previous coach Frank Vogel. Later, the Lakers replaced Vogel with Darvin Ham. On top of that, Patrick Beverley also joined the Lakers last season in the beginning. However, the Westbrook and Beverley combo was not bringing any good results for the Lakers. Albeit, they had no feud. In fact, they became good friends later.   

Was Westbrook A Bad Choice For The Lakers?

Austin Reaves Russell Westbrook
Austin Reaves Russell Westbrook Source: Bleacher Report

Previously, with Westbrook, the team had no balance and stability. They could not maintain a winning streak. Moreover, the Lakers were lingering at the bottom half of the Western Conference. At one point, the Lakers were the 13th seed of the conference. But after the mid-season trades, the Lakers gradually rose to the 7th seed under the leadership of Anthony Davis. Moreover, after LeBron James returned from a tendon injury, he and Davis helped the side reach the conference Finals.

The WCF did not go according to plans. But fans credited the mid-season trades for the miraculous turnaround of the season for the Lakers. Before the mid-season trades, almost everybody blamed Russell Westbrook for the terrible situation of the LA side. The Oklahoma City Thunder legend faced blame for non-performance and a lack of scoring. Some even said that Westbrook is only on the team because of his name and fame.