Lakers’ D’Angelo Russell on being involved in trade rumors: ‘I genuinely, humbly don’t care’

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Yes, Los Angeles Lakers veteran point guard D’Angelo Russell is aware that he’s been the subject of rampant trade rumors.

No, he doesn’t care.

It’s not that Russell doesn’t want to be with the Lakers, it’s just that he refuses to spend much time worrying about things that are out of his control.

“My approach is just a little different,” Russell said after scoring a team-high 28 points in the Lakers’ 124-118 win over the Charlotte Hornets on Monday night. “I really just genuinely, humbly don’t care because I know I can’t control it for one, and two, I just won’t allow my mind to go there. Focus on basketball and not comments and what’s trending on social media.”

He signed a $36 million, two-year contract with Los Angeles in 2023 that includes player option worth $18.6 million next season, per Spotrac. When he signed that deal, he reportedly waived the no-trade clause.

“I can’t control that my contract makes sense to be traded,” Russell said. “So I mean, I just play. I can’t control that. Once again, I don’t care at all.”

The NBA trade deadline is Thursday afternoon, just a few hours before the Lakers host the defending NBA champion Denver Nuggets in their next game.

The 27-year-old Russell knows a deal is possible, if not inevitable.

His approach over the next 48 hours is simple: “Show up and work,” he said.

“Obviously, I’ve been here before, I played for the Lakers before so I know what the requirements are to be successful here are,” said Russell, who was dealt by the Lakers to the Brooklyn Nets following his second season in the league in 2017. “If you are success here, you will be a part of the future, if not you will get traded.”

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Russell’s numbers this year are nearly identical to last season, averaging 17.4 points and 6.2 assists while shooting 41.6% from 3-point range after a slow start.

But since reentering the starting lineup on Jan. 13, Russell was averaging 23.7 points and 6.6 assists and is shooting 47.1% on 3s before the Charlotte game.

He has averaged 17.7 points and shot 36.6% from 3-point distance for his career.

Reporting by The Associated Press.

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