Donovan Mitchell joins NBA legends in questioning report that Russell Westbrook was a ‘vampire’ on Lakers

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Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Cleveland Cavaliers star Donovan Mitchell joined NBA legends Carmelo Anthony and Chris Paul in questioning the report that Russell Westbrook was a “vampire” in the Los Angeles Lakers locker room.


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Westbrook was traded by the Lakers ahead of the trade deadline in a three-team deal with the Utah Jazz and Minnesota Timberwolves. Westbrook ended up in Utah in the deal while the Lakers brought in D’Angelo Russell, Malik Beasley and Jarred Vanderbilt.

Mitchell, Paul and Anthony took to Instagram to question the negative report regarding Westbrook.

While things didn’t go the way the Lakers would have liked with Westbrook, LeBron James and Anthony Davis, the 2017 MVP took most of the criticism during his time in Los Angeles.

It seems that other players around the NBA feel that Westbrook is getting an unfair amount of criticism for his time with the Lakers, and Mitchell is one that felt the need to speak out.

Mitchell is no stranger to drama in the locker room, as he and Rudy Gobert had been rumored to not get along during Mitchell’s time with the Jazz.

Now, Mitchell is in Cleveland and thriving for a Cavs team that could make a run at a top-three spot in the Eastern Conference this season.

Westbrook’s future in the NBA is a little bit in question, as it’s possible he gets bought out by the Jazz, who are clearly in a rebuilding phase.

He may have a chance to latch on with a contending team this season if that does end up happening.

The Lakers and Westbrook didn’t end up being a great fit partly due to the team’s lack of shooting around him, James and Davis.

Under head coach Darvin Ham, the team had started to come to a solution to that problem, as Westbrook took a smaller role this season coming off the bench. That allowed Westbrook to be the team’s lead ball-handler at times, and he thrived in that role from time to time.

This season, Westbrook is averaging 15.9 points, 6.2 rebounds and 7.5 assists per game while shooting 41.7 percent from the field and 29.6 percent from beyond the arc.

It will be interesting to see where he ends up next and if he can shake the current narrative surrounding him and his time with the Lakers.

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Peter is a graduate of Quinnipiac University where he covered the MAAC and college basketball for three years. He has worked for NBC Sports, the Connecticut Sun and the Meriden Record-Journal covering basketball and other major sports. Follow him on Twitter @peterdewey2.