For the time being, Russell Westbrook is still a member of the Jazz, following Wednesday’s trade from the Lakers.
But that isn’t expected to last long.
Instead, the Jazz and Westbrook are expected to reach agreement on a contract buyout within the next several days. At that point, Westbrook will presumably clear waivers and then become a free agent, eligible to sign anywhere.
And it appears that Westbrook already has a couple of destinations in mind. Per Hoops Wire sources, those two teams are the Bulls and Heat. (Sammi Hassan, @BullsTimes, has reported similar.)
Westbrook’s rocky run with the Lakers doesn’t seem to be influencing teams or create pause about having him on their radar. A lot of rival GMs who spoke to Hoops Wire place at least part of the blame on the Lakers.
“He was a lousy fit as soon as that trade was made,” said one.
At any rate, it may not hurt the Bulls to at least try. Their season isn’t going as planned, as they intended to build off last year’s playoff appearance. Instead, they have been incredibly up-and-down, and have no clue if and when point guard Lonzo Ball will ever return from his mysterious knee injury. So, they could use a guard.
Meanwhile, the Heat finished with the Eastern Conference’s best record last season, but have floated around the middle of the pack for most of this year. Westbrook could be a risk worth taking when you have nothing to lose.
The Clippers also have been mentioned as a potential suitor — though sources told Hoops Wire that after playing in his hometown of LA, and having it not work out, Westbrook may welcome a chance to play in an arena that’s not shared by the Lakers.
And the Clippers’ interest in Westbrook has never been all that intense, anyway, sources added.
No matter, Westbrook will have another new home soon. Already, it appears he has narrowed the possibilities to two.