NBA

Russell Westbrook Re-Signs With the LA Clippers: Will He Continue to Revitalize His Career?

Aidan Cotter
Aidan CotterAidanCotterFD
Russell Westbrook Re-Signs With the LA Clippers: Will He Continue to Revitalize His Career?

The Los Angeles Clippers wasted no time getting their point guard back ahead of the 2023-24 season, resigning Russell Westbrook to a two-year, $7.8 million contract with a player option next summer.

After losing Eric Gordon, resigning Westbrook became a top priority for the Clippers. Along with acquiring Kenyon Martin Jr. from the Houston Rockets, the Clippers shored up both their first and second units.

Was Russ' Resurgence Legit?

There was real speculation that Russell Westbrook's time as an NBA starter was done after he was shipped off by the Los Angeles Lakers and subsequently cut by the Utah Jazz. However, the Clippers revitalized his career after they signed him during the All-Star break.

Westbrook's counting stats didn't change much with the Clippers, but his efficiency rose dramatically. In 21 regular season games with the Clippers, Russ averaged 15.8 points and 7.6 assists while shooting 48.9% overall and 35.6% from beyond the arc. He started every game for the Clippers after just three starts for the Lakers last season

Russ really proved his worth during the postseason. While the Clippers lasted a mere five games against the Phoenix Suns, Westbrook went down swinging. He notably dropped 30 and 37-point games with both Kawhi Leonard and Paul George out. If those two can stay healthy, Westbrook will be one of the most accomplished and dynamic third options in the league.

Westbrook has long been one of the most talented but polarizing players in the league. He's just two years removed from averaging a triple-double and willing the Washington Wizards to a playoff berth. Three months ago, he did drop those 67 points across two playoff games.

The talent is still there with Russ. If the Clippers get that same level of intensity and effort for just $3.9 million a year, he could be one of the biggest bargains in the league.

Betting Odds Impact

Westbrook resigning with the Clippers wasn't a major surprise, but their NBA Finals odds still shifted somewhat after the first three days of free agency. Prior to free agency opening, Los Angeles was +2300 to win it all. At the time of this publication, they're down to +1900, per the NBA Finals odds at FanDuel Sportsbook.

Some of the shift could be due to speculation that they're favorites to land a disgruntled James Harden from the Philadelphia 76ers. Despite their odds shortening, the Clippers' position among the rest of the league didn't change. Los Angeles still holds the ninth-best odds to win the it all -- just as they did before.

They aren't a favorite, but the Clippers certainly can't be called a sleeper heading into 2023-24.


The above author is a FanDuel employee and is not eligible to compete in public daily fantasy contests or place sports betting wagers on FanDuel. The advice provided by the author does not necessarily represent the views of FanDuel. Taking the author's advice will not guarantee a successful outcome. You should use your own judgment when participating in daily fantasy contests or placing sports wagers.