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To surprise of no one, Russell Westbrook will pick up $47 million option for next season

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It was obvious and long expected, but on Tuesday it became official: Russell Westbrook withdraw his $47.1 million option next season and return to the Los Angeles Lakers in the fall. From ESPN’s Adrian Wojnarowski:

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It can hardly be called news, it was such a sure thing. Unlike John Wall situation in Houston, there will be no foreclosure. The Lakers were looking for a trade for Westbrook, but Kyrie Irving the flirt reminded everyone that there was no market for a Westbrook deal right now.

It throws everything at the new coach Darwin Ham to find out.

“Make no mistake, Russell is one of the best players our league has ever seen and there’s still a ton of fuel in that tank,” Ham said at the opening press conference as Westbrook dangled 30 feet from him. “I don’t know why people try to write him off.”

Ham said everything is correct. He spoke with Westbrook about adjusting his game to fit Ham’s system (and Westbrook’s current skill set).

“Russ and I had some very, very great one-on-one conversations, and the most important word that came out of those discussions was sacrifice,” Ham said earlier this month. “We will sacrifice everything we have to do, and not just Russ. There will be sacrifices that LeBron, AD, will have to make throughout the rest of our lineup.”

LeBron James and coach Frank Vogel failed to get support from Westbrook last season on the same ideas. It became a distraction. Now Ham has to take pretty much the same ingredients that didn’t make the playoffs last season and create something that works a lot better.

And Westbrook will be a part of it – and he will be well paid for it.



Source: nba.nbcsports.com

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