When the Warriors acquired All-Star guard D'Angelo Russell from the Nets in a sign-and-trade this offseason, general manager Bob Myers knew much more about the player than the person.
Myers knew his team was acquiring someone who can score in a hurry. He knew Golden State was getting a crafty lefty that can dish it and drain shots from deep. The more Myers has gotten to know Russell, the more he's excited for the future of the franchise.
Russell and Myers recently met in New York, and the GM hit his new guard with some tough questions regarding his murky past as a Laker.
"He said, 'In hindsight, maybe I wasn't ready for what was coming in L.A. with being the No. 2 pick.' A lot of people would blame everybody else and say it wasn't my fault, which I think showed a maturity," Myers said on The TK Show.
Russell was involved in a public incident as a rookie with the Lakers where he recorded a video on Snapchat of teammate Nick Young admitting he cheated on his fiancée, Iggy Azalea. Though only has been in the NBA for four seasons, Russell's road has been a long one.
Since being drafted in 2015, Russell has dealt with the pressure of being the No. 2 pick in L.A., the trials of the Young incident, being traded to Brooklyn, turning into an All-Star and now joining the Warriors.
"For a guy that's pretty new in the league, he's been through more than most I'd say," Myers said. "Being a high pick, going to the Lakers, getting moved, going to Brooklyn ... the way he handled that, helping them ascend, kind of coming into his own."
Russell enjoyed his breakout year last season where he averaged 21.1 points and seven assists per game. Any GM would be glad to add that to his roster. After speaking with Russell, Myers couldn't be happier.
"I'm happier now than I was even when we did it, knowing more about who he actually is," Myers said.