LA Lakers Rumors: D'Angelo Russell's Decision On Player Option

Los Angeles Lakers point guard D'Angelo Russell has an $18 million player option for next season,  but according to NBA insider including Brian Windhorst, Russell will be declining that option to become an unrestricted free agent.

“I think almost certainly he will not pick up the option," said Windhorst on his Hoop Collective podcast. You work your whole life to be coming off a great season and be unrestricted."

"I don't see why he would consider picking up that option," added fellow insider Tim MacMahon. "Why be on a one-year deal when you've had a great year and outplayed your contract?"

Russell was thought to be a certain trade option earlier in the season, but he went on a spectacular run, making him indispensable to the team heading up to the trade deadline. "The Lakers would be in deep trouble if D'Angelo Russell hasn't played as good as he has," noted MacMahon. "So you've gotta give him some credit."

Dave McMenamin also added that while the Lakers will be going "big game hunting" this summer for a player such as Donovan Mitchell, and would need Russell's contract to do that, "there are worse things that could happen certainly than extending this guy and having him be a part of what they've got going."

"The Lakers do own his rights, do they sign and trade him?" opined Windhorst. 

Russell is averaging 18.2 points and 6.3 assists this season while shooting 42% from three. Since the All-Star break, he's averaging 21 points and shooting 43% from long range. 

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