Los Angeles Lakers coach Darvin Ham wants Russell Westbrook to be accountable On the defensive end. Also, Westbrook has agreed to come off the bench every now and then as they try to make the most of his talents.

But as much as they both seem sold on working things out, Westbrook's name continues to be thrown around in trade rumors. Needless to say, the Lakers would love to get rid of the nearly $50 million he's set to make this season.

So, even though that may seem complicated right now, ESPN's Dave McMenamin believes there's still a light at the end of the tunnel. Apparently, moving Westbrook will be way easier when teams start tanking to get Victor Wembanyama and Scoot Henderson.

NBA News: Lakers Could Trade Russell Westbrook When Teams Start Tanking For Victor Wembanyama

"The Lakers' most optimistic outlook for Westbrook is that Ham will get through to him in a way that Vogel couldn't, and the nine-time All-Star will have a bounce-back season with some better effort defensively and better discretion offensively," McMenamin wrote. "Ham closed out the preseason by bringing Westbrook off the bench, a lineup the Lakers will continue to explore during the regular season, sources told ESPN."

"Another thought process, perhaps more realistic, is that more and more potential trade partners will open up as teams will be tantalized to join in the tankathon to get to the top of the 2023 NBA draft where a generational talent in Victor Wembanyama and a blue chip prospect in Scoot Henderson await," the report added.

More teams will be willing to absorb expiring contracts like Westbrook's, lose games, and try and get one of the top picks in the upcoming Draft. Then, they could even work out a buyout with Russ and allow him to play for a contender.

Nonetheless, there's still a chance that the Russell Westbrook experiment turns out well under Darvin Ham's administration, although the early returns in the preseason were far from encouraging.