- HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors - http://www.hoopsworld.com -
What Westbrook’s injury means to the playoffs
Posted By HOOPSWORLD On April 26, 2013 @ 4:00 pm In Wirenews | Comments Disabled
by Sam Amick, USA TODAY Sports
Thursday night, while watching the matchup between the Memphis Grizzlies and Los Angeles Clippers that epitomized the best the NBA playoffs has to offer when two quality teams have their health and a fighting spirit, this writer came close to tweeting out the following: “So which star player will go down next and change the playoff landscape (again).”
Little did I know it had already happened.
But not Russell Westbrook. Not the Oklahoma City Thunder star whose importance to his team is on par with anyone – yes, anyone – who’s still standing. Not the feisty, fearless point guard who dared the then-elite Los Angeles Lakers to beat his up-and-coming team during OKC’s playoff baptism in 2010 that, despite the six-game series loss, sparked such a special rise for Kevin Durant, Westbrook and the Thunder and was merely the beginning for the dynamic young talent who ran their show. Not the seemingly-invincible player who had never missed a game in his five-year NBA career, his two years at UCLA or even during his prep days in Southern California.
As sidekicks go, Westbrook kicks everyone else’s tail – yes, everyone.
And now, after Derrick Rose and Rajon Rondo and Kobe Bryant and David Lee and so many others who were forced to watch this postseason that they should be starring in, everything has changed. Again.
Westbrook tore the meniscus in his right knee in the second quarter of Wednesday’s Game 2 win against Houston. It happened when the Rockets’ Patrick Beverley lunged for a steal near the sideline and caught Westbrook’s right knee with his backside.
He finished the game with the injury, and even finished with 29 points in the win. But superhuman he is not, so now he faces a surgery that – no matter how long Oklahoma City can survive without him – will likely take him out of the playoffs and shifts the power in the Western Conference to that place where it so often seems to be this time of year – San Antonio.
The Spurs were already looking like themselves again, handling the ailing Lakers with relative ease in … [For more on What Russell Westbrook's injury means to the playoffs, click here.]
Article printed from HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors: http://www.hoopsworld.com
URL to article: http://www.hoopsworld.com/what-russell-westbrooks-injury-means-to-the-playoffs
Copyright © 2013 HOOPSWORLD | Basketball News & NBA Rumors
Part of the USA TODAY Sports Media Group.