The Pacers reportedly jettisoned Lakers’ Westbrook-centered trade offer

In a move that surprised literally no one, the Indiana Pacers reportedly rejected the Los Angeles Lakers’ trade offer centered on former MVP and maligned star Russell Westbrook.

Various outlets pointed to the Lakers trying to make a run at point guard Malcolm Brogdon by offering Westbrook, guard Talen Horton-Tucker, and a future first-round pick in the lead-up to the 2022 NBA Draft.

The Indiana Pacers rightfully declined to be the Lakers’ saving grace

Despite the conventional Westbrook + THT being widely used as meme material throughout the internet to interject the Lakers’ incredibly limited options to improve their roster via trade, it is the reality that the franchise is facing in the present. Having mortgaged their future in the Anthony Davis and Westbrook deals, the 2020 NBA Champions will have to be very ingenious to try and move the needle and maximize LeBron James’ twilight years.

However, league-wide perception on their assets is out of their control, and what they currently have on deck is simply and objectively too unimpressive to even score serious conversation with teams. In fact, the Indiana Pacers brass seemingly could not help but chuckle at the Lakers’ offer, with ESPN’s Jonathan Givony dishing on the matter.

You’re hearing some, they’re calling Indiana and saying, “How do you feel about Westbrook and Talen Horton-Tucker and our 2026 first-rounder?” And they just get a nice chuckle and say, “No thank you, we’ve got better deals on the table than that.

The subtle (is it really?) jab is one thing, but the latter part of the quote holds weight. As said here just recently, Malcolm Brogdon is likely to be moved in the following days, and there are certainly bidders for the playmaker’s services.

Like all teams do, mishaps happen. The Los Angeles Lakers made a massive one, but the Indiana Pacers certainly want no part of absorbing the poison pill they so desperately want gone.