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Russell Westbrook OUT Wednesday vs. Trail Blazers due to back injury

The point guard is being held out at a suspicious time.

Milwaukee Bucks v Los Angeles Lakers
Russell Westbrook of the Los Angeles Lakers stretches before the game against the Milwaukee Bucks on February 8, 2022 at Crypto.Com Arena in Los Angeles, California.
Photo by Tyler Ross/NBAE via Getty Images

The Los Angeles Lakers have ruled Russell Westbrook out Wednesday against the Portland Trail Blazers with a back injury. The point guard was a late add to the injury report but has had some back problems over the course of the season. It’ll be the first game Westbrook will miss this season.

Westbrook has been in trade rumors all season long, and him being ruled out ahead of the trade deadline is suspicious to say the least. The Lakers have tried to navigate the awkward fit between Westbrook, LeBron James and Anthony Davis but injuries have not allowed the trio to get enough time on the court. Westbrook has also been benched in crunch time, leading to more rumors swirling.

Look for Austin Reaves and Malik Monk to get more run in the backcourt with Westbrook out Wednesday. We’ll see if the Lakers guard is moved ahead of the deadline or if this was actually a legitimate injury.