The Los Angeles Lakers have finally made some moves in the offseason as they have traded for Patrick Beverley improving their defense largely. However many people have been very critical about the trade as they feel that Pat Bev cannot co-exist in the same team with rival Russell Westbrook.
NBA Analyst Stephen A Smith also has the same opinion that Beverley and Westbrook cannot be in the same team as they are totally different characters and they have had history. Pat Bev and Westbrook have had their fair share of altercations in the past. Even last season Beverley lead the charge against Westbrook and mocked him for his airballs.
Recently Jeanie Buss and new coach Darvin Ham has praised Westbrook with Ham also saying that he wants to see Beverley and Westbrook playing side by side in the team. Something which Stephen Smith believes is not possible given the nature of people both the players have been over the years.
Smith on his ‘First Take’ podcast shared how the fierce rivalry that exists between the two players and how they simply cannot co-exist at the Lakers. “Patrick Beverley was one of the people that was screaming on the basketball court last year. When he was in Minnesota, Russell Westbrook played against him. Patrick Beverley was one of the people screaming ‘He with us’ every time he touched the ball,” Smith reminisced
Smith highlighted how Beverley mocked Westbrook for his air balls as he led the charge for the Timberwolves against the Lakers defensively. “Let him shoot, he with us.’ You see what I’m saying? Russell Westbrook ain’t the type of dude, that’s just gonna forget stuff like that. I don’t think stuff like that’s going to happen. So I think that they cannot coexist and it will have to change.”
Despite a few rumours at the start of the offseason, Westbrook has still remained a Laker and has recently opted into $47 million player option for the upcoming season. However there are some reports that suggest that Beverley’s addition to the Lakers dressing room is a sign that Westbrook will be on his way out. The reports suggest that the Lakers may trade him or send him home and restrict him from playing in the upcoming season, something that the Houston Rockets did with John Wall last season.