Sport Russell Westbrook made history and cost the Thunder any chance at a first-round upset

22:25  20 april  2017
22:25  20 april  2017 Source:   FOXSports

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Somewhere, Kevin Durant is laughing. And laughing. And probably laughing some more. Russell Westbrook turned in the first 50-point triple-double in NBA playoff history on Tuesday. Along the way, he cost his Oklahoma City Thunder any shot of knocking off the Houston Rockets.

Bubba Watson fired a 6-under 66 in the first round to take a one -stroke lead at the weather-delayed Shenzhen International on Thursday. Russell Westbrook made history and cost the Thunder any chance at a first - round upset .

Somewhere, Kevin Durant is laughing. And laughing. And probably laughing some more.

BOX SCORE: ROCKETS 115, THUNDER 111

Russell Westbrook turned in the first 50-point triple-double in NBA playoff history on Tuesday. Along the way, he cost his Oklahoma City Thunder any shot of knocking off the Houston Rockets.

For the first 24 minutes, the Thunder and Westbrook were at their very best. He had 22 points, eight rebounds and, best of all, 10 assists at halftime. Oklahoma City claimed a 68-62 lead. Truly, things were looking up for a Thunder team that looked outclassed in Game 1.

Oscar Robertson hands Russell Westbrook award, starts MVP chant

  Oscar Robertson hands Russell Westbrook award, starts MVP chant After Russell Westbrook broke his 55-year-old triple-double record, Oscar Robertson wanted to congratulate the Thunder guard in person. Robertson, 78, was in Oklahoma City Wednesday for the Thunder's final regular-season game and in addition to chatting with Westbrook before the game, Robertson presented him with the Dr. James Naismith Achievement Sculpture for individual achievement in a special pregame ceremony.

Russell Westbrook made history and cost the Thunder any chance at a first - round upset . 3. An audacious idea for the next great NASCAR track.

Russell Westbrook made history and cost the Thunder any chance at a first - round upset . Russell Westbrook was at his best -- and his worst -- in the Oklahoma City Thunder 's Game 2 loss. FOX Sports 12 hours ago - Sports.

Then the game got tight in the second half, and Westbrook’s worst instincts got the best of him.

It was the darkest timeline version of Westbrook, as he ignored open teammates and drove headlong into Houston defenders, begging for foul calls or for the basketball gods to answer the prayers he kept chucking toward the rim.

He forced shot after shot as the clock ticked down and the Rockets heated up, going 4-for-18 in the fourth quarter.

All the while, James Harden and the Rockets kept making the smart basketball play. The contrast was striking — the 2016-17 NBA MVP debate in a nutshell, really. Houston used a 7-0 run with Westbrook on the bench to get back in the game, then leveraged his atrocious decision-making down the stretch for a 115-111 win.

Oscar Robertson hands Russell Westbrook award, starts MVP chant

  Oscar Robertson hands Russell Westbrook award, starts MVP chant After Russell Westbrook broke his 55-year-old triple-double record, Oscar Robertson wanted to congratulate the Thunder guard in person. Robertson, 78, was in Oklahoma City Wednesday for the Thunder's final regular-season game and in addition to chatting with Westbrook before the game, Robertson presented him with the Dr. James Naismith Achievement Sculpture for individual achievement in a special pregame ceremony.

Apr 16, 2017; Houston, TX, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) attempts to control the ball during the second quarter against the Houston Rockets in game one of the first round of the 2017 NBA Views from OKC: Grading the Thunder ’s chances of pulling off an upset 1 d ago.

Mar 3, 2017; Phoenix, AZ, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) reacts as he controls the ball against Phoenix Suns forward Derrick Jones Jr. (10) in the second quarter at Talking Stick Resort Arena.

Obviously, the Thunder made it this far because of Westbrook. They’ll take the good with the bad on most nights. Without him, they’d be the Orlando Magic of the West, and no one wants that.

Yet he’s equally culpable in Oklahoma City’s struggles. We can admit that, right? Sometimes, Westbrook wins you games. Sometimes, he costs you them. That’s just the reality of watching one of the game’es best players.

Believing that the only way the Thunder can win is if Westbrook plays this way is nonsense. Being an elite NBA player is as much about reining in your most destructive instincts as it is maximizing what you do well. Westbrook has the latter on lock; his refusal to modulate his behavior, on the other hand, continues to cost his team in the biggest moments.

Westbrook vs Harden the highlight when NBA playoffs open

  Westbrook vs Harden the highlight when NBA playoffs open Russell Westbrook against James Harden is a sensational start to the NBA postseason. Golden State against Cleveland no longer looks like the certain finish.The playoffs open this weekend, highlighted by a must-see matchup in the first round between record-setting guards who are former teammates and now leading MVP candidates.They swapped spectacular highlights during the regular season: Westbrook averaging a triple-double in carrying Oklahoma City after Kevin Durant's departure; Harden leading the league in assists for a high-octane Houston offense that shattered the NBA record for 3-pointers.

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Oklahoma City Thunder . Missing history by one board, Russell Westbrook awaits his next chance . 9dTim MacMahon. Harden vs. Westbrook headlines first round matchup. 6hESPN Stats & Information.

We’re guessing KD himself can confirm.

It’s simple. If you’re going to be the heart, soul, body and mind of your team, you have to take the blame when you self-destruct.

So keep insisting the only way the Thunder can win is if Westbrook is their everything. Keep making excuses for the presumptive MVP when he looks off open shooters and does whatever he wants. Keep celebrating his box-score-filling ways — and keep ignoring that this team should be better than the sum of its parts.

Deep down, you know as well as Westbrook does: He’s both Oklahoma City’s only hope and its greatest undoing.

Now he does what he wants, indeed.

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Watch: Russell Westbrook, Rockets' Patrick Beverley have heated exchange .
The Rockets got the last laugh and eliminated Westbrook from the playoffs.The bad blood between Oklahoma City Thunder star Russell Westbrook and pesky Houston Rockets guard Patrick Beverley finally boiled over in Game 5.

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