KEY POINTS

  • A Westbrook for Simmons swap seems to make no sense for the Lakers
  • Simmons' inability to man up during crunch time makes him a questionable choice
  • The Lakers appear to be ready to trade Westbrook for the right offer

It appears the Los Angeles Lakers are indeed exploring trade possibilities, and a potential swap involving Russell Westbrook and Ben Simmons of the Philadelphia 76ers was considered.

According to Michael Scotto of Hoops Hype, the Lakers and the Sixers engaged in a call-to-talk about the possibility.

However, there was no mention of Westbrook and that Los Angeles only expressed interest in the 6-foot-11 Australian.

If one considered the current state of the Lakers and even if his name was not mentioned, Westbrook is the only player that made sense.

Considering the money needed to take in the 6-foot-11 cager, only he, LeBron James or Anthony Davis may get the deal done.

Unfortunately, Westbrook is not among the names that the 76ers fancy.

So unless the Lakers can offer some other assets that would impress top brass Daryl Morey, this potential Westbrook-Simmons swap is unlikely to prosper.

On the part of the Lakers, it somehow confirms that they are open to shipping Westbrook to another team.

The nine-time All-Star has struggled to fit in with the Lakers, and it remains to be seen which team would show interest in him.

As far as acquiring Simmons to take the 33-year-old’s place, the franchise may be better off sticking with Westbrook.

His recent game performances are proof that he remains effective, but his consistency throughout is needed.

Although he is struggling, the fact remains that Westbrook is not afraid to take the big shots.

It is an issue that has hounded Simmons since last season and there is a chance that the 25-year-old cager may be in a similar predicament if he moves to Hollywood.

Aside from that, Westbrook owns shooting that Simmons continues to work on.

With James and Davis the top options, the best Simmons can bring is playmaking and defense.

But as most know, points from the bench are the main problem that the Lakers want to address.

The NBA trade deadline is in February, so it will be interesting which team would be willing to take a deal for Westbrook.

If there are no takers, the best Frank Vogel can do is try to make things work. I

t won’t be easy, but the 2018 NBA MVP may still be their best bet–especially considering their injury-plagued roster.

Russell Westbrook #4 of the Washington Wizards guards Ben Simmons #25 of the Philadelphia 76ers Russell Westbrook #4 of the Washington Wizards guards Ben Simmons #25 of the Philadelphia 76ers Photo: Getty Images | Tim Nwachukwu