NUGGETS

Report: Nuggets targeting a trade for a future Hall of Famer

Jun 30, 2024, 5:08 PM | Updated: Jul 1, 2024, 2:47 pm

The Denver Nuggets are targeting a trade with the Los Angeles Clippers for future Hall of Fame point guard Russell Westbrook, according to TNT, Yahoo Sports, Stadium and The Athletic.

The 2016-17 MVP is a nine-time All-NBA player, nine-time All-Star, two-time scoring champion and has already been named to the NBA’s 75 best-players of all-time team a few years ago.

Westbrook opted into his $4 million contract with the Clippers earlier on Sunday but that seems to have come with the caveat that the sides would look for a trade. In the NBA, it’s sometimes easier to find a new home while keeping a few extra bucks via trade rather than hitting the market outright. This seems to be the case with this circumstance where the Nuggets are heavily limited in free agency by being in the luxury tax but could maneuver a trade involving young players or an exception involving the recently traded Reggie Jackson for Westbrook.

The 35-year-old UCLA Bruin has been in the league for 16 years and has bounced between five franchises, with his most legendary stint coming for the Oklahoma City Thunder. It’s for the Nuggets division rival that Westbrook won the NBA MVP and hit a buzzer-beater in Denver three to cap his unreal triple-double averaging season.

But that was a rare deep shot for Westbrook who is one of 269 players to attempt 2,000 threes in his career and his percentage is 268th. Those shooting issues have really come to light as Brodie’s athleticism has declined. This has caused him to bounce around the league a bit, including a horrible stint for his hometown Lakers after they traded Kentavious Caldwell-Pope for him.

More recently Westbrook has developed into a strong bench player for the star-studded Clippers. Last season he played in 68 games, starting 11, and averaging 22.5 minutes, 11.1 points, 5.0 rebounds and 4.5 assists a night. He shot just 27% from three but still puts a lot of pressure on the rim and is a decent defender at 6-foot-4 thanks to his high motor.

Westbrook would likely slide in behind Jamal Murray as Denver’s backup guard. It also likely spells the end of Caldwell-Pope’s time in Denver due to trade rules. The Nuggets would still have a few other avenues to add to their roster, which has the looming starting two-guard and backup center questions. But with Westbrook they would have their answer to Jackson’s leaving and it comes in an almost always available backup guard, it’s just that he can’t really shoot and has caused some drama off the floor at several of his stops.

Nuggets

Russell Westbrook Denver Christian Braun...

Will Petersen

First calls for Russell Westbrook to start in Denver have begun

Paul Pierce shared an interesting thought as he wants to see Russell Westbrook start in Denver, pushing Jamal Murray to shooting guard

3 days ago

Russell Westbrook #0 of the LA Clippers celebrates after scoring against the Denver Nuggets...

Jake Shapiro

Westbrook traded, expected to be cut and sign with Nuggets

With heavy suggestion from three-time MVP Nikola Jokic, the Denver Nuggets will add former MVP Russell Westbrook

4 days ago

Michael Malone Nuggets NBA Power Rankings...

Will Petersen

Nuggets have a significant fall in post-free agency Power Rankings

The Nuggets have taken a significant tumble in ESPN's latest Power Rankings, going from No. 2 in the NBA on June 17 to No. 7 on July 17

4 days ago

Hall of famer Peyton Manning and son Marshall are seen in attendance during Game Five of the 2023 N...

Jake Shapiro

Two Denver icons among ESPN’s top 100 pro athletes of the 2000s

Peyton Manning and Nikola Jokic, two athletes whose legend will forever echo the Mile High City with a lasting impact of greatness

5 days ago

Nikola Jokic #15 of Serbia...

Jake Shapiro

Steph Curry and USA smack Jokic’s Serbia in Olympics preview

The Americans pummeled the Serbians in Nikola Jokic and crew's final exhibition game ahead of the 2024 Paris Olympics

5 days ago

Russell Westbrook of the Los Angeles Clippers against the Denver Nuggets...

Jake Shapiro

Nuggets are the frontrunners to get Westbrook but there’s a catch

The Denver Nuggets are the favorites to get Russell Westbrook this summer but the long-rumored move is being held up

6 days ago

Report: Nuggets targeting a trade for a future Hall of Famer