Los Angeles Lakers guards D’Angelo Russell and Nick Young’s relationship was on the rocks after video leaked of Russell recording the man known as “Swaggy P” bragging about cheating on his fiancee Iggy Azalea. The leaked video caused a flurry of controversy reportedly fracturing the Lakers locker room. Azalea herself tweeted support of Russell for recording the video.
hmmm i see D Angelo Russell is trending… I actually liked his film. Thanks bro.
— IGGY AZALEA (@IGGYAZALEA) March 30, 2016
Russell spoke with Adrian Wojnarowski of The Vertical and said the video leaking made him sick.
“I am sick,” Russell told The Vertical by phone on his drive to the Staples Center on Wednesday. “I am sorry about recording the video. I can’t repeat myself enough on that: I am sorry I recorded that video. I feel horrible. I wish this never happened.”
The Lakers held a press conference today where Russell cleared the air about the video. Russell echoed his comments that he told to Woj, telling the media he felt awful about the situation and said he had no idea how the video leaked, while expressing remorse about potentially ending Young and Azalea’s relationship.
Young spoke to Lakers beat reporter Mike Trudell and said “I think it’s best me and D’Angelo handle our situation in a private manner. It’s something we need to talk about.”
Young tweeted and deleted (something he’s grown fond of doing recently) a comment that appears to suggest he hasn’t accepted Russell’s apology.
Quickly deleted. pic.twitter.com/rZSDdWMTPf
— Jordan Ramirez (@JRAM_91) March 31, 2016
Russell received a mixed reaction when introduced in tonight’s matchup against the Heat.
Mixed reviews for D'Angelo Russell's intro in tonight's starting lineups pic.twitter.com/IcdHNmkgVk
— Serena Winters (@SerenaWinters) March 31, 2016
Boos for D’Angelo Russell every time he touches the ball.
— Ryan Ward (@RyanWardLA) March 31, 2016
The situation may not be resolved, but Russell seems genuinely torn up about the incident. It’s easy to forget he’s only 20-years-old and at that age, you’re prone to do stupid things. Young shouldn’t have been so coy to openly brag about cheating on his fiancee (or doing it in the first place) but Russell’s actions have now cast a very dark shadow over the entire organization at a point in the season where the team would have preferred to be either contending or at least focusing on Kobe’s farewell tour. It’s hard to see this story going way soon and that really falls on Russell’s cavalier usage of social media which is jeopardizing the team’s culture and chemistry as they look to start the rebuilding process. You have to imagine that the majority of the Lakers at this point just want the season to end which is never a good sign for any team.