It’s been a rough week for the Lakers to say the least. It started with a great win against the Utah Jazz on Monday punctuated with a devastating loss to the hapless Indiana Pacers on Wednesday. Much maligned Lakers guard Russell Westbrook skipped out on his post game press conference after being benched in crunch time in the Indiana loss.
Head coach Frank Vogel is reportedly on the hot seat. Ownership is unhappy with the team’s performance.
The Lakers are such a big story that even NFL divisional round playoff talk took a back seat to the purple and gold circus on Thursday morning.
Westbrook has been the center of conversation as the Lakers (22-23) struggle with Anthony Davis sidelined.
Fox Sports’ Colin Cowherd made an interesting comparison to another hyper-athletic MVP who failed to fit his game into an ever-changing league.
“He’s like Cam Newton. The game has just moved beyond him. What that game asks now of stars he doesn’t do well.”
In a NFL dominated by the passing game, Newton completed just 54.8% of his throws in eight games this year. His career as a starting NFL quarterback is likely over.
In a NBA dominated by three-point shooting, Westbrook is shooting just 30.4% from downtown.
Cowherd went even further by suggesting that the Lakers are better off jettisoning Westbrook.
“You’re almost to the point with the Westbrook deal, and this is shocking to me, that you’re almost better off just to write it off maybe and just move him. Just get him out of the locker room. Is that where we’re at?”
That proposition is easier said than done. Westbrook is set to earn $44.2M this year which makes finding a trade partner all the more difficult.
The Lakers play their next six games on the road. For better or for worse, it’s anyone’s guess if Westbrook or Vogel make the flight home.