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  • Writer's pictureDaniel Palmore

The Los Angeles Lakers Have Won a Basketball Game!

The Los Angeles Lakers did it. They have finally won a basketball game. On Sunday night, they beat the Denver Nuggets 121-110 in a game where they also retired the legendary George Mikan's #99. The big three for the Lakers all played well as LeBron James finished with 26/6/8, Anthony Davis finished with 23/15/2 and Russell Westbrook came off the bench and finished with 18/8/8.

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Lakers fans definitely had reason to be excited because it looked like Russell Westbrook could possibly have a positive impact on the Lakers after all. Darvin Ham brought Westbrook off the bench for a second straight game it looked much better because the Lakers were hitting threes, and Westbrook was able to play a style of basketball he is more comfortable with. It had been proven time and time again that if you put Russ in a situation where he cannot be the main ball handler, he struggles because he is left alone on the three point line and forced to take low percentage three point shots. He also struggles playing big minutes on the floor with LeBron James and Anthony Davis because those two players like to primarily play and execute in a halfcourt setting.

Russell Westbrook coming off the bench allows to play with the mindset of knowing for certain he is the best player on the floor for the Lakers at any point. This also allows him to be the primary ball handler because there is not another player on the Lakers outside of LeBron James that you can really trust to make decisions as a primary ball handler. This is not to say that you can even trust Westbrook because ultimately, you really can't. If the Lakers have figured out how to properly utilize Russ, they can definitely make the playoffs in a stacked west, but a deep playoff run is too much to ask for.

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This is arguably the biggest season of Russell Westbrooks career because if he proves to be a negative asset for the Lakers that is making a bunch of money, it is going to be hard for him to land on a new team next year. It is clear as day that his game is not something that teams can rely on to win, but if Darvin Ham putting Russ on the bench (something Frank Vogel never tried) becomes LA's key to success, there may still be a chance for them this year.

There are still a ton of games left in this young NBA season, the Lakers finally got a win and will look to capitalize on it in Wednesday night's matchup against Zion Williamson and the Pelicans.

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