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Thursday, March 22, 2018

Articles tagged: Russell Westbrook

Report: Russell Westbrook will not be disciplined by NBA for fan incident

Russell Westbrook fan

Russell Westbrook will not be punished by the NBA for an incident with a fan on Thursday night.

ESPN’s Royce Young shared the news on Westbrook via Twitter Friday:

Westbrook was confronted by a Denver Nuggets fan on the court after Gary Harris’ 3-pointer to win the game for Denver at the buzzer. The fan ran up to Westbrook and yelled at him, prompting Westbrook to push him away in response.

Denver police, arena security, and the NBA were looking into the matter. And it sounds like Westbrook will avoid punishment with the NBA likely deeming he was acting in self-defense.

NBA investigating Russell Westbrook fan incident

Russell Westbrook fan

The NBA is investigating the on-court incident involving the Denver Nuggets fan and Russell Westbrook following Thursday night’s game.

After the Nuggets beat the Oklahoma City Thunder 127-124 on Gary Harris’ buzzer-beating 3-pointer, a fan charged onto the court and got into Westbrook’s face. He yelled at Westbrook, who pushed him in response.

The Nuggets issued a statement about the matter saying that Denver police and arena security looked into it. They said the NBA is also investigating the matter.

“We can confirm that the Denver Police Department was involved as well as arena security officials. The matter has been passed on to the NBA and they will be investigating the incident further and handling the matter internally,” the Nuggets said in a statement.

Westbrook spoke about the matter after the game and said the fan going onto the floor was “totally unacceptable.”

Russell Westbrook pushes Nuggets fan after game (Video)

Russell Westbrook fan
Russell Westbrook was involved in an incident with a Nuggets fan after his team’s loss in Denver on Thursday night.

Denver’s Gary Harris gave his team a 127-124 win with a buzzer-beating 3-pointer that capped a wild back-and-forth ending. After he made his shot, it appears that a Nuggets fan made his way onto the floor and appeared to scream in Westbrook’s face, prompting Westbrook to push him away:

The fan obviously had no business being on the floor with Thunder players still around and should not have been getting in an opposing player’s face, but Westbrook should not be making contact.

The league will no doubt be investigating the incident for potential discipline for Westbrook. The only question is whether they view his actions as reactionary and an example of self-defense, or whether they will hold a zero-tolerance policy for physical contact. This is not the first time Westbrook has had an exchange with an opposing fan, though the last one did not get physical.

Was Russell Westbrook’s huge game fueled by perceived snub?

Russell Westbrook

Russell Westbrook went for a season-high 46 points in Thursday night’s win over the Washington Wizards, and it seems like his huge game may have been fueled by a perceived All-Star Game snub.

This year’s All-Star Game has a new format with the two top players in votes received are captains and got to choose teams. The draft took place in private, preventing fans from seeing who was picked first and who went last. However, the NBA’s press release on the teams listed the players in alphabetical order. That meant Westbrook was listed last on LeBron James’ team.

Keep in mind that the All-Star teams were announced before the Thunder’s game against the Wizards. Also note that John Wall, who plays for the Wizards, was listed one spot above Westbrook thanks to his last name.

Well Westbrook scored 46 on 19 of 29 shooting and had laser focus. Is that because he thought he had been picked last by LeBron and that Wall was picked before him?

Based on this video shared after the game, it sure seems so. (beware of bad language from Carmelo Anthony in the background)

“I see that I was the last pick on the list … so I was trying to figure it out,” Westbrook told reporters, who assured him it was in alphabetical order.

Westbrook is at his best when he has a chip on his shoulder. The seeming All-Star game draft disrespect certainly provided that for him.

Russell Westbrook’s support made huge impression on Paul George

Paul George

Russell Westbrook’s anger over Paul George being left off the All-Star team made a huge impression on his teammate.

The reserves for the All-Star team were revealed on Tuesday, and George was left off the squad in what many viewed as one of the biggest snubs. After Oklahoma City’s win over the Brooklyn Nets later that night, Westbrook went to bat for George and called the snub “outrageous” and “unbelievable.”

A day later, George told ESPN’s Rachel Nichols that the support from Westbrook felt great.

“Russ is the reason why this decision is becoming even more easier to make, is the character Russ [has],” George said on Wednesday. “A stand up guy, and he has his teammate’s back.

“It was awesome for a teammate to have your back and to stand up. And to be honest, he should be a starter. He’s been the MVP, been the best player at his position. He should’ve been a starter. But that’s another story. But the fact Russ had my back, that’s my guy forever, and it’s more apparent what this decision needs to be made when it comes down to it.”

It’s looking more and more like Thunder GM Sam Presti’s gamble to trade for George without a guarantee that he would remain with the team longterm will pay off. He already got Westbrook to sign a long-term extension, and now it sounds like George may commit to the team longterm. That is how to build a team.

Russell Westbrook: Paul George All-Star snub is ‘outrageous’

Russell Westbrook

Paul George might not have had strong feelings about his All-Star snub, but teammate Russell Westbrook certainly did.

Westbrook spoke after the Oklahoma City Thunder’s 109-108 win over the Brooklyn Nets on Tuesday and was very clearly not happy about George being left off the All-Star squad:

Perhaps a big reason why George did not make the All-Star team — aside from there being so many good players in the West — is OKC’s slow start. It took two months for the Thunder to gain their footing and start putting together a winning record, so it may have been hard to justify giving them two All-Stars.

George’s points, field goal percentage and rebounds are down from his last two seasons with the Pacers. But his three-point percentage and steals are up, which is a decent tradeoff. Either way, the strong support from Westbrook has to make him feel good.

Russell Westbrook does not speak with media after loss

Russell Westbrook did not speak with the media after the Oklahoma City Thunder’s loss to Portland on Tuesday night.

The Thunder fell at home to the Trail Blazers 117-106, with Westbrook coming a rebound away from a triple-double. After the game, Westbrook was not present to speak with the media.

The Thunder face the Timberwolves in Minnesota on Wednesday, so they’re on a tight travel schedule. But so are all of Westbrook’s teammates who stuck around to speak with reporters.

Westbrook probably knows that if he leaves before speaking with the media, that will generate headlines, just like it did recently when one of his teammates did the same thing. We’re guessing he doesn’t care in the slightest.

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