The Los Angeles Lakers made a big move Wednesday ahead of Thursday’s trade deadline, sending Russell Westbrook to the Utah Jazz as part of a three-team trade also involving the Minnesota Timberwolves. The Lakers got D’Angelo Russell from Minnesota while also adding Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt from Utah. The Jazz got a 2027 top-4 protected first-round pick from the Lakers and Westbrook, while the Timberwolves got Mike Conley and a second-round pick from Utah.
In the move, the Lakers got a strong offensive point guard in Russell, a quality perimeter rotation player in Beasley and a backup big man in Vanderbilt. Los Angeles didn’t move the needle too much in terms of title chances, but this is a much better overall group for LeBron James and Anthony Davis to make a run with. And the Lakers might not be done.
LA still has the 2029 first-round pick at its disposal, along with some additional salary fillers in Lonnie Walker and Patrick Beverley. There’s some good players out there who could help the Lakers, like Bojan Bogdanovic and Buddy Hield. LA has been linked to both guys this season, so we’ll see if the Lakers front office can pull off another strong trade before the deadline.