Anyone who saw last night's matchup between the Warriors and Thunder in Oklahoma City could tell guard Russell Westbrook was more than ready for this one for a number of reasons. The Thunder star and reigning Kia MVP was looking to get his team on track after a two-game skid. He wanted to show off his new teammates -- Paul George and Carmelo Anthony -- against his old rival. And, of course, he wanted another crack at former teammate Kevin Durant, too.
* Recap: Thunder 108, Warriors 91
All of those factors came to a head throughout the game as Westbrook came one assist shy of a triple-double and delivered a thundering, foot-stomping jam on Golden State in OKC's romp of a win. Afterward, notes Erik Horne of The Oklahoman, Westbrook said his play was on par with any other game for him:
It was a divine performance from the Thunder point guard, one fueled by a controlled chaos that few in the NBA can perform with like Westbrook.
“I play the same way every night,” Westbrook said. “… if it's against Kevin …”
After an emotionally charged 108-91 Thunder win over the Warriors, Westbrook had to pause briefly and think, his thoughts and engine still running from the Thunder's first win over Golden State in seven regular-season games.
“Who (do) we play Friday?” Westbrook said briefly before remembering. “Detroit, Reggie Jackson. Dennis Smith on Saturday. It don't matter who it is.
“I go out and compete at a high level. I go out and play at a high level. I've been saying that since Day 1 and that's what I do.”
Durant acknowledge that he knew his former teammate would be charged up for this game and the crowd's elation over each of Westbrook's plays only served to drive him more:
“Oh yeah, he feeds off anything,” Durant said. “He played with a chip on his shoulder. You've been seeing it his whole career.”
Will it always be this emotional between Westbrook and Durant?
Is it ever not emotional when Westbrook is on the court?
“That's my game,” Westbrook said. “I feel like that's my gift. To be able to come out every single night to use my energy, my enthusiasm to be able to keep my team and our team going.”
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