D’Angelo Russell is happy the Lakers traded him.
Los Angeles was reportedly involved in discussions to acquire star Pelicans forward Anthony Davis before the deadline and almost all of its young players were involved in the trade rumors. But, those talks stalled and no deal was reached.
Russell, who was sent from the Lakers to the Nets in June 2017, said he was glad he was not in that environment.
“I can’t imagine what they’re trying to block out,” Russell told Bleacher Report. “…If (the Lakers) didn’t let me go then, they were gonna let me go now, and I’d be going through what they’re going through. Best thing that happened in my career.”
The Lakers selected Russell with the second pick in the 2015 draft, but he was inconsistent during his two seasons with the team.
Russell, however, has developed into a go-to scorer for Brooklyn and is set to make his first All-Star appearance this weekend.
“I came (to the Nets) with open arms,” Russell said. “I always knew I could do what I’m doing. It’s just all about opportunity in this league.”
Russell is averaging a career-high 20 points and 6.6 assists in 29.9 minutes per game this season. He’s shooting 43.6 percent from the field and 37.4 percent from 3-point range.
The Nets enter play Wednesday in sixth place in the Eastern Conference with a 29-29 record.