Viernes, 21 Julio, 2017

Houston survives 51-point production of Westbrook

ERIK WILLIAMS  USA TODAY 
 
   Russell Westbrook had the first ever 50-point triple double in NBA playoff history ERIK WILLIAMS USA TODAY Russell Westbrook had the first ever 50-point triple double in NBA playoff history
Galena Nuncio | 21 Abril, 2017, 20:09

"That's cool", he said.

"I don't give a f-- about the line", Westbrook said. "It's hard to win a championship".

To be fair, having Westbrook on the court probably wouldn't have slowed down Houston's fast-paced offense. The Rockets simply look like the better team overall, and it probably wouldn't shock many if the series ends in OKC. He may not have won the game for his team on Wednesday. In 2006-07 the Suns won 61 games, but were ousted in the conference semifinals.

Sunday's Game 1 for the Thunder was reminiscent of their Game 1 in the Western Conference semifinals against San Antonio a year ago when the Spurs buried the Thunder 124-92. Only one MVP in the last 35 years has lost in the first round of the playoffs: Dirk Nowitzki in 2007.

He isn't daunted by his postseason misfortune, and is looking forward to changing things this year. "I would personally, but everybody would, too".

Houston survives 51-point production of Westbrook
Houston survives 51-point production of Westbrook

So long as we have a series that involves the likely top two vote getters in this season's NBA Most Valuable Player race, this is probably what the preamble for each "4 Winners, 4 Losers" post is going to turn into.

The Rockets are off to a good start. After 24 minutes of re-invigoration, Oklahoma City thwarted Houston's vaunted pick-and-roll on multiple occasions, and held a six-point advantage. Westbrook's plus-minus rating on the court was +4.0 and off the court it was -8.5, a 12.5 point difference.

Perhaps most important to Houston's success was D'Antoni moving James Harden to point guard.

Beginning with Westbrook's ridiculous performance in Game 2 - from his 51-point, 10-rebound, 13-assist triple-double to going 4-for-18 in the fourth quarter and shooting the Thunder out of a close game - Katz discusses everything that comes with being around Westbrook, from analyzing his play in that game to how he's played the entire season to what it is like dealing with someone as unpredictable as Westbrook can be in every facet of his life on a daily basis. Harden was quoted saying the match "wasn't pretty".

To winners and losers we go.

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There have also been talks of a knitted brain hat - similar to the "Pussyhats" donned by demonstrators at the Women's March. Unfortunately, we're living in a time where lies are presented as "alternative facts" and science is pooh-poohed as theory.

"He's confident in what he has", Harden said.

Thomas' sibling was killed in a vehicle crash the day before the Celtics' series opener against the Chicago Bulls but he played in the first two games - where the Bulls were winners on each occasion.

Kiwai Leonard of San Antonio averaged a career-best 25.7 points per game while leading the Spurs to 61 wins, second-best in the National Basketball Association the year legend Tim Duncan retired after 18 seasons. In terms of free throws, the Rockets made 18-of-22 while the Thunder delivered 13-of-14. Here's to two more lectures this week on why James Harden will get robbed of the MVP trophy.

"(The NBA is) full of so many good teams and they're all primarily in the West", Sandoval said. "They're having an awesome year, and my guess is that Mike will get the trophy".

"Oladipo needs to play better certainly".

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After the departure of Kevin Durant, Westbrook showed the league the elite player he can be.

"When you have games like this you just go back to the basics, go back to what got you here, continue to keep working and never lose confidence", Oladipo said about what he needed to do to improve. "He talks to you, you have conversations". I think he realized going into the fourth quarter that we weren't going to survive without him. They will go as far as Westbrook takes them.

"My opinion on All-Defensive team is different than you guys", Westbrook said.

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He is the fourth Michigan State football player suspended amid sexual assault allegations this year. Was arrested Jan 2016 on misdemeanor battery charge from Oct '15 incident at HS in Fort Wayne.

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