2. His contract is massive and will have the team far into tax
Westbrook is on a supermax contract that he signed in Oklahoma City in 2017. He comes at a hefty price tag of around $133 million over the next three years. Granted he opts into the final year in 2022, which is almost a given at $47 million at 35 years old.
The Lakers at the moment do not have the salaries to match up to this deal in the first place. They would need guys to opt in to their deals to get there. Danny Green is a must, they need Avery Bradley and JaVale McGee to exercise options.
It’s a very complicated process that you’re talking about getting rid of any flexibility this team has. You’re committing to going far into the luxury tax and relying on veteran minimum options. Your mid-level exception also goes from $9.3 million to $5.7 million.
Between Westbrook, AD and LeBron you’re looking at paying three guys next season around $130 million. That’s not smart management at all and a tax bill that might be the largest of all time.
Pelinka did well putting this team together and avoiding the tax. Making this move would harness them for quite some time. Their big three would be surrounded by 12 spots that are either two-way players or veteran minimum players.