Report: Rockets would require Lakers’ 2027 first-rounder in Russell Westbrook-John Wall swap

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Report: Rockets would require Lakers’ 2027 first-rounder in Russell Westbrook-John Wall swap
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If the Los Angeles Lakers decide to pull the plug on the Russell Westbrook experiment, the only team that can reportedly help them is the Houston Rockets.

Longtime NBA insider Marc Stein reported the news last week in his NBA newsletter, saying the Rockets would be interested in swapping John Wall to L.A. for Westbrook since both players are making similar money.

But if the Lakers take that way out, they will need to depart with their 2027 first-round pick, according to Kelly Iko of The Athletic:

For a deal to get done, Houston would have to be enticed by an aggressive Lakers approach — one involving either a third team or suitable additional assets — to make it work. Houston would require the Lakers’ 2027 first-rounder in such a deal, sources tell The Athletic, but it’s unclear how willing the Lakers are to put that on the table.

This makes sense considering the Rockets wouldn’t play Westbrook after already trying that a few seasons ago.

But this route is also an enormous risk for the Lakers. Wall has not played this season and isn’t the same player he used to be before his Achilles injury. Losing that vital first-rounder to essentially dump Westbrook wouldn’t be a good look, especially since that pick — one of their few key trade chips — can be utilized for a different trade.

List

Who will the Lakers trade before the deadline?