Our exit interview series on the 2024 Clippers continues with a look at controversial backup point guard, Russell Westbrook.

Basic Information

Height: 6’4

Weight: 200 pounds

Position: Point Guard

Age: 35

Years in NBA: 16

Key Stats: 11.1 points, 5.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists and 1.1 steals per game across 68 games played (11 starts) on 45.4/27.3/68.8 shooting splits


Coming into the 2023-24 season, expectations for Russell Westbrook changed dramatically from the offseason. Westbrook immediately became the starting point guard when he was signed on the buyout market in 2022-23. He was expected to be the starting point guard in 2023-24, but the Clippers managed to swing a deal for James Harden in the early days of the regular season.

When the initial backcourt pairing between Westbrook and Harden didn’t quite get off to a hot start, the Clippers ended up moving Westbrook to the bench. He was expected to provide a spark and leadership with the second unit.


During Westbrook’s short time with the Los Angeles Lakers, his move to the bench didn’t go so smoothly. But by all accounts, he took his move to the bench with the Clippers much better.

For the most part, Westbrook did his job during the regular season. The Clippers starters had a tendency to get off to slow starts and sometimes depended on their bench to get back into the game.

Westbrook was the key catalyst for many of those comebacks with his energy and aggressiveness. When he was sidelined for about three weeks due to a fractured hand, his presence was missed tremendously.

Where things began to fall apart a little bit was during the playoffs. In the Clippers first round loss to the Dallas Mavericks, Westbrook’s inability to consistently knock down jumpers hurt the Clippers. The Mavericks often left him open and dared him to shoot and he couldn’t make them pay. He shot a playoff career-low 26 percent from the field and was ineffective in other elements of the game.

Future with Clippers

Westbrook heads into the offseason with a player option on the two-year contract he signed in 2023. There’s been no concrete word as to which direction he may be leaning.

He reportedly took less money than he could have gotten elsewhere to re-sign with the Clippers. His player option for next season is worth $4,027,525. It’s also not quite clear what he might command on the open market.

With the Clippers expected to make a strong push to re-sign James Harden, any role Westbrook would have with the team for 2024-25 would be off the bench. It really comes down to how much more he is willing to sacrifice in terms of role and minutes in pursuit of a championship. There is a role for him on this team, but maybe not as big as last season, and that could certainly lead to him going elsewhere.

David Yapkowitz

David Yapkowitz

David is in his sixth season as credentialed media at Los Angeles Clippers games and second season covering the team for 213 Hoops. He also covers the game at the college and high school levels. When his professional basketball dreams did not materialize, he turned to the next best thing, writing about it.

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