Like everyone who follows the NBA,watched as the reportedly offered , , and in their pursuit of New Orleans Pelicans big man before the Feb. 7 trade deadline.
“I can’t imagine what (rumors) they’re trying to block out,” Russell toldabout the Lakers’ young core, who could also be offered in trade talks during the coming offseason.
Russell is happy to avoid that sort of scenario, having been traded from the Lakers to thein June 2017, prior to the heightened stakes that came along when signed in Los Angeles last summer. Otherwise, Russell imagines his name would be dangled among the trade bait, too.
“If (the Lakers) didn’t let me go then, they were gonna let me go now, and I’d be going through what they’re going through. Best thing that happened in my career,” he added.
Now in Year 4 of his NBA career, Russell is averaging career bests in both points (20) and assists (6.6), and recently earned his first All-Star Game selection in place of injured Indiana Pacers guard.
As the focal point of the Nets’ offense, Russell’s also led the team to a 29-29 record and the sixth seed in the Eastern Conference. Meanwhile, his old Lakers squad boasts a 28-29 record but sits 10th in the tough Western Conference with 25 games to play.
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