West Notes: Suns, Lakers, LeBron James, Clippers, Russell Westbrook


New owner Mat Ishbia doesn’t believe there was any risk in the blockbuster trade with the Nets to acquire star forward Kevin Durant, Ishbia said in a lengthy interview with Chris Mannix of Sports Illustrated.

“I don’t look at it as a risk at all. I look at it as a vision and a decision,” Ishbia told Mannix. “And you go with your decisions and you run with it. It doesn’t mean everything’s going to work out or that we’re going to win multiple championships and you know it was right. You have to play the games.”

He added that the decision to make the trade for Durant was unanimous.

“It was. This was the right decision for the team and for the business and for the players,” he told Mannix. “It wasn’t a tough decision. We really didn’t want to give up some of the guys, because we love those guys. They were winners and we didn’t want to give them up. But at the end of the day the right decision was, what do we do to maximize our team for today and for the next three to four years? This is going to be what the Phoenix Suns are about.”

  • Cavaliers owner Dan Gilbert was the only owner who abstained when it came to voting for Ishbia to take over the Suns. “I wasn’t surprised,’ Ishbia told Mannix. “I know who he is.”


Star forward LeBron James doesn’t seem too concerned with the hand injury he suffered in the All-Star Game.

 “I tried to get one little chase-down block, and got my finger caught in the rim. But I’ll be fine,” he said, via Daniel Starkand of Lakers Nation. “I’ll be fine. I don’t think it’s too much to worry about. For precautionary reasons, I just had to take the rest of the night off.”

  • James called the Lakers’ final 23 regular-season games the most important of his career. We have that full story here.


The Clippers believe veteran guard Russell Westbrook will indeed be a fit, wrote Mirjam Swanson of the Orange County Register

“The Clippers know what they’re getting,” Swanson wrote. “And maybe that’s the energy they think they need with 21 regular-season games left — even though Westbrook is shooting 41.7% from the field, the second-lowest mark of his career. And his turnover percentage — 18.1 per 100 plays — is the highest of his career.”

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