Lakers Rumors: D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley & Jarred Vanderbilt Acquired In Three-Team Trade With Timberwolves Sending Russell Westbrook To Jazz
Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Things became clear in recent weeks that the Los Angeles Lakers needed to make one or multiple trades in order to get back in contention.

The Lakers got off to a nice start when they acquired Rui Hachimura in a trade with the Washington Wizards. Ahead of the trade deadline though, L.A. was looking to make more moves.

Making trades aren’t easy in the NBA, especially when teams are up against a deadline. Three-team trades are even harder, but it appears the Lakers, Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves were able to come together on a deal, perhaps giving L.A. the roster upgrades it needs.

According to Adrian Wojnarowski of ESPN, the Lakers have acquired guard D’Angelo Russell from the Timberwolves as well as wing Malik Beasley and forward Jarred Vanderbilt from the Jazz in a three-team deal that sends guard Russell Westbrook to Utah and Mike Conley to Minnesota:

It looks like the Lakers will only be sending out one first-rounder pick in the deal in 2027, while also including Juan Toscano-Anderson and Damian Jones:

The Timberwolves wound up getting some second-round picks to unload Russell in exchange for Conley and Nickeil Alexander-Walker.

This marks a return home for Russell, the former second overall pick of the Lakers back in 2015. He has grown tremendously as a player since then, even being named an All-Star with the Brooklyn Nets in 2019. The 26-year-old has been with the Timberwolves since 2020 and is enjoying another solid season.

Russell is averaging 17.9 points and 6.2 assists this season, being capable of operating both on and off the ball. Additionally, he is enjoying a career year shooting-wise at 46.5 percent from the field and 39.1 percent from 3-point range, both career highs.

Beasley is an ideal 3-and-D wing who is capable of guarding multiple positions and has also proven to be a knockdown shooter in his career. While his 3-point shooting has dipped this season, he is a career 38 percent shooter from deep in his seven seasons in the NBA. This season with the Jazz he is averaging 13.4 points and shooting 35.9 percent from 3, his lowest percentage since the 2018 season.

Vanderbilt doesn’t bring much on the offensive side but is one of the better defenders from the forward spot this league has to offer. While he has worked to improve his outside shooting, what Vanderbilt gives the Lakers is one of the best options they could have at defending some of the bigger wings around the league. Even still, he is averaging a career-high 8.3 points this season and his 33.3 percent shooting from 3-point range is also a career-high.

What’s next for Westbrook?

The Lakers will be saying goodbye to Westbrook, who had become the team’s sixth man this season and embraced his new role as a creator and energy boost with the second unit. Westbrook averaged 17.4 points, 6.9 rebounds and 7.2 assists during his time with the Lakers.

Although he is being traded to the Jazz, the expectation is that Westbrook will be bought out. It was reported earlier in the season that the Miami Heat are a team to watch for if Westbrook is bought out, so it will be interesting to see if that’s where he ends up now that his Lakers tenure has come to an end.

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