Wednesday, December 8, 2021

DeMar DeRozan has strong words for Lakers star Russell Westbrook

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During the off-season, the Los Angeles Lakers were linked to a number of notable players. One of the names that kept coming back was DeMar DeRozan. The four-time all-star is from Los Angeles and seemed like a natural addition to the team. In fact, he was pretty confident that he would join his home team.

He had his first game against the Lakers on Monday since signing with the Chicago Bulls. He had a chance to delve deeply into why he didn’t sign with the team in the off-season.

“I felt like going to the Lakers was a done deal and we would find out. I wanted to come home, “DeRozan told Yahoo Sports’ Chris Haynes. “The business side of things just didn’t work out. A couple of things didn’t go together. It did not work. It’s just part of the business, part of the game. My next option was definitely Chicago. So in retrospect, it worked out well.

“But there is always motivation. It can just be coming home and playing in front of friends and family and competing against teams you grew up with. There are all sorts of motivations that you carry and you are trying to channel that energy into the game. I find that in every game, but when you definitely go back to your hometown you want to play well and you have the motivation to put on a great show. “

DeRozan scored 38 points en route to a 121-103 win over the Lakers.

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If the Lakers hadn’t swapped Westbrook for Russell, DeRozan could be very good on the team now. Given their previous awards, it’s understandable why the team made this decision. DeRozan has never been an MVP or an icon like Westbrook. He understands why the Lakers picked him and didn’t shoot the team despite the early fighting this season.

“No, Russ is a Hall of Fame player,” DeRozan told Yahoo Sports. “It’s hard to turn down that caliber of players. I can’t speak for the Lakers, but they went with what they thought was best. And all due respect. No hard feelings. No hostility, but I just see it as part of the game. A deal is never closed until it is closed. I learned that. It just didn’t work out. I’m just glad I’m in Chicago. “

Based on early results this season, there is no question that DeRozan played better than Westbrook. He averages 26.9 points per game at 51.0% shooting, while Westbrook averages 19.4 points per game at 42.7% shooting. The Bulls have a 10-4 record while the Lakers are 8-7.

That said, Los Angeles has missed LeBron James through injury for much of the season, while the Bulls are mostly healthy. It’s way too early in the season for the Lakers to know if they made a mistake in choosing Westbrook. It can take him some time to get used to a new team like we saw at the Washington Wizards last season. DeRozan has been great for the Bulls, but he’s probably already reached his limits with the team. Westbrook still has a long way to go before he reaches his full potential with the Lakers.

CONTINUE READING: Lakers Land Pistons Star has a “ridiculous” trade proposal for 2 players

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