Former NBA star Gilbert Arenas recently spoke out on his podcast, Gil’s Arenas, expressing his disapproval of the Los Angeles Lakers’ treatment of now LA Clippers guard Russell Westbrook. Arenas criticized the Lakers for their perceived unfair treatment of Westbrook, stating that the hate he received was unwarranted, considering he was the only player consistently available on the team.
Arenas began by addressing the Lakers’ injury woes during Westbrook’s first season with the team. He pointed out that both LeBron James and Anthony Davis missed a significant number of games due to injuries, leaving Westbrook as the lone star on the court for extended periods. According to Arenas, Westbrook’s consistent availability was one of his strongest attributes throughout his career, and he continued to show that with the Lakers.
While Arenas might have exaggerated the extent of James and Davis’ absences, his central argument remains valid. James played just 56 games, and Davis played a mere 40 games during that season, leaving Westbrook to carry a substantial burden on his own. The lack of support from his star teammates, combined with the pressure to deliver results, led to Westbrook facing heavy criticism from fans and media alike.
Arenas questioned the fairness of this criticism, arguing that if it were known at the start of the season that James and Davis would miss a significant portion of games, expectations for the team’s performance would have been much lower. However, due to Westbrook’s durability and willingness to step up, the Lakers remained competitive even in the absence of their top players.
Russell Westbrook’s ability to stay on the court and perform consistently has been a hallmark of his career. Throughout his time with various teams, he has shown resilience and determination, making him a valuable asset to any squad. Even with the Lakers’ struggles, Westbrook consistently gave his all, trying to lead the team to victories.
Arenas’ comments shed light on the challenges Westbrook faced during his stint with the Lakers and emphasized the importance of recognizing his efforts and dedication. Despite the criticisms and the team’s shortcomings, Westbrook’s work ethic and commitment to the game should not be overlooked.
As Westbrook moves on to the LA Clippers, he carries with him the support of Gilbert Arenas and the acknowledgment that his contributions to the Lakers should be appreciated and respected. As the NBA landscape continues to evolve, Westbrook’s unwavering availability and competitive spirit remain assets that will undoubtedly benefit his new team.