Lakers’ Internal Hope for Russell Westbrook Revealed: Report

Lakers guard Russell Westbrook

Getty Lakers guard Russell Westbrook

The Los Angeles Lakers‘ internal hope for point guard Russell Westbrook has been revealed.

According to an August 9 report from Chris Haynes of Yahoo Sports, the Lakers are hopeful Westbrook will improve his 3-point shooting from the corners next season. The corner 3-pointer is the shortest shot from beyond the arc.

“The team is also hopeful for a corner-3 shooting percentage bump from Russell Westbrook next season, sources said,” Haynes reported.

Westbrook shot 29.8% from beyond the arc last season. However, the one-time MVP hit 43.8% of his 3-pointers from the corner, which was fourth on the Lakers.

Westbrook Urged to Become ‘Supercharged Version’ of Bruce Brown

In a July 19 column, Bleacher Report’s Andy Bailey wrote that Westbrook should embrace a “rim-running role” with the Lakers, which is what Bruce Brown did with the Brooklyn Nets. Brown played the previous two seasons with the Nets before signing a two-year, $13.3 million deal with the Denver Nuggets this summer in unrestricted free agency.

“The situations are far from perfectly analogous, but Bruce Brown spent the first two seasons of his career with the Detroit Pistons as a guard before embracing a rim-running role with the Brooklyn Nets. Westbrook can be a supercharged version of that (assuming a willingness to work on his touch in the paint). He did it to a degree with Houston, but he still started plenty of possessions as the point man,” Bailey wrote. “It’s time to lean even harder into being a cutter, dunker’s spot option and corner three-point shooter.”

Westbrook, 33, started 78 games for the Lakers last season. He averaged 18.5 points, 7.4 rebounds and 7.1 assists while shooting 44.4% from the floor, 29.8% from beyond the arc and 66.7% from the free-throw line. The nine-time All-Star was second in the NBA in turnovers and 42nd in true shooting percentage.

LeBron James, Anthony Davis, Westbrook Talked in July

On July 18, Haynes reported that Westbrook, LeBron James and Anthony Davis spoke on the phone, with each All-Star expressing their commitment to one another. James and Westbrook didn’t sit next to each other or say hi during the Lakers’ Summer League game on July 8 in Las Vegas.

“The Los Angeles Lakers’ Big 3 of LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Russell Westbrook huddled up on a phone conversation the first weekend of NBA Summer League in Las Vegas with each expressing their commitment to one another and vowing to make it work, league sources told Yahoo Sports,” Haynes reported. “While the uncertainty of Westbrook’s future with the Lakers remains, the conversation was organized to make sure all three were on the same page as long as they’re joined together in their pursuit of a championship, sources said.”

Westbrook hosted a free basketball camp in Los Angeles and posted a slideshow of pictures on his Instagram page on August 7 with the following caption: “Had the best time connecting with our young people for the return of our Why Not? Foundation Basketball Camp. Over 100 campers from across LA came to elevate the fundamentals of their game for free.”

James, the Lakers’ best player, was one of the many individuals who commented on Westbrook’s post. The King wrote, “That’s what it’s all about!!”

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