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"We can be unstoppable in my opinion" - Russell Westbrook does not mind coming off the bench for the Los Angeles Lakers

Nothing screams soap opera in the making more than the current situation of the Los Angeles Lakers.
Los Angeles Lakers guard Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook

After a disappointing season with the Los Angeles Lakers, Russell Westbrook is ready to bounce back this upcoming season. He's been involved in trade talks all summer and knows full well that the Lakers no longer believe in him, but still, the nine-time All-Star said he's committed to the team and will do anything to win — even if it means coming off the bench, something Westbrook has never done in his career since his rookie season.

A strong chance Westbrook comes off the bench this season

With Darvin Ham now at the helm, there's reportedly a possibility that he evicts Westbrook from the starting lineup. The 1st year head coach has reportedly communicated this possibility with Westbrook, and it seems the future Hall-of-Famer has accepted the role. According to Westbrook, if coming off the bench is what's best for the Lakers, then he will choose to do exactly that.

After all, Westbrook still believes that the trio of him, LeBron James, and Anthony Davis (who only played 21 games together last season) has yet to reach its maximum potential.

"There's so much optimism on how we can be great, how AD, LeBron, myself -- can be unstoppable in my opinion," Westbrook said, as reported by ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski.

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The Lakers finished with an abysmal record of 33-49 last season and surprisingly didn't even make it to the play-in tournament. James and Davis missed a total of 68 games together. In the 21 games the trio played together last season, they lost 11 of them and rendered a net rating of -3.5 in the 395 minutes they shared together on the court.

Despite no proof that this trio, as Westbrook states, “can be unstoppable,” the Lakers are hoping that the new young and defensive-minded players they assembled to build this season's roster will dramatically improve the team compared to last season's squad, which was filled with veterans and old legs.

The Lakers are playing a dangerous game.

Los Angeles didn't trade Westbrook heading into a new season because they didn't want to let go of more assets in the process. While they've made it clear since last season's trade deadline (and even more in the past 4 months) that they don't want Westbrook on the team, they're playing a dangerous game by bringing him back this season.

As professional as Westbrook has been all summer, how do the Lakers expect to get the best out of him if he knows he's unwanted in the organization? Is benching him the right solution for the Lakers to move forward?

James, who signed a contract extension with the Lakers this summer, is heading into his 20th season, and it's the Lakers' responsibility to ensure that the 4-time champion is in the best position to compete for a championship. So far, that's not looking promising, and it'll be up to Ham, Rob Pelinka, and Jeanie Buss to handle this dangerous game they currently find themselves in.

Ultimately, the Lakers and Westbrook are stuck with each other, whether they like it or not. Nothing screams soap opera in the making more than the current situation of the Los Angeles Lakers.

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