The Los Angeles Lakers have made what could turn out to be a very important addition in their deal for forward Rui Hachimura. Oftentimes there is an adjustment period after a trade, especially for a young player in the middle of the season. Thankfully for Hachimura, there are a couple of familiar faces on the Lakers in Thomas Bryant, Troy Brown Jr. and Russell Westbrook.
Westbrook, of course, spent one season with the Wizards before the Lakers traded for him in 2021. The veteran guard enjoyed his time with Hachimura in Washington and is happy to get the chance to play with him once again.
“First of all, Rui is a great human, a great person,” Westbrook said when asked about the fourth-year forward. “We definitely connected a lot in DC. Happy to be back with him, he’s a hell of a talent that can fit in anywhere. Just happy that he’s here and we’ll get a chance to play alongside each other again.”
It is worth noting that both Westbrook and Rob Pelinka mentioned Hachimura’s character before anything else. It is easy to focus on the basketball side as that is what everyone wants to know about, but for his character and how great of a person he is to be brought up immediately shows how good of a human being he really is.
But the basketball side is important too and Westbrook is excited to see him bring his game to the Lakers.
“He’s a guy that doesn’t get a lot of credit but he’s a hell of a scorer,” Westbrook added. “Great hands, can shoot the ball really well, can guard any position on the floor, a big body. I’ve seen him do great things and I’m just excited to see him do it here. With an opportunity, he can be successful here.”
Hachimura will definitely get the opportunity to thrive with the Lakers and he certainly fills a need as a big body forward who can defend and stretch the floor. And the fact that he already has a connection with Westbrook and others on the roster should only help make his transition easier.
Rui Hachimura expected to eventually start in Lakers frontcourt
The Lakers see Hachimura as an important piece who can fit in any role and ideally, the goal is to eventually start him according to recent reports.
The Lakers reportedly see Hachimura starting next to superstars Anthony Davis and LeBron James in the frontcourt once the team is completely healthy and rotations get figured out. Of course things can change and ultimately it will be up to head coach Darvin Ham to figure out what is best for the team.
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