The Spurs were coming off the second night of a back-to-back. Head Coach Greg Popovich's comments post-game echoed his frustrations with the overall effort from his team.
As it turned out, the biggest impact Westbrook had on the win was on one of those proverbial "didn't show up in the box-score" plays.
The hottest National Basketball Association team right now, the San Antonio Spurs (49-13) led by the MVP candidate Kawhi Leonard, are hosting the Sacramento Kings (25-38), who are still adjusting after trading DeMarcus Cousins.
San Antonio (50-13) won its ninth straight and extended its league record for 50-win seasons to 18 straight. "I know there's games where his usage rate is through the ceiling, but that's what the game requires for that night from him". The Thunder had lost four consecutive games, including a Tuesday loss to Portland, in which OKC didn't have its usual rebounding dominance. The final disadvantage was 10 points, 92-102.
Keep this all in mind when you want to get upset about Russell Westbrook or any of 6 other deserving players not winning the MVP this season.
Kelly Olynyk added 17 points, five rebounds and five assists for Boston. I didn't because it seems insane to think that someone might average a triple-double and not be MVP. They rallied in the second half, outscoring the Kings 66-41 after halftime. "And tonight was a game where he was just leading, managing, getting everybody involved". You've got to stay in front of guys.' Offensively, we've got to move the ball.
Oladipo finished with 20 points, while Enes Kanter and McDermott scored 14 and 11, respectively, off the bench for the Thunder (36-29). "We have great team chemistry". 24 points from the back-court isn't going to work very often. Westbrook, in particular, will try to take advantage of a exhausted Spurs team. Labissiere's previous season high was 12 points against Denver on February 23. It was his 31st of the season, tying him with Wilt Chamberlain in 1967-68 for second on the all-time single-season list. The Spurs All-Star forward was treated for the injury along the bench and was missing for most of the end of the game. The Spurs set the top mark at 53-10 last season and were 51-12 in 2011.
Well, there are folks who will point to his shooting struggles (7-for-21 from the floor, including a 1-for-6 effort from deep), but they're probably also in the camp that refuses to consider Westbrook a "superstar". It's not really much I can do to make an excuse about it.
This was his first one against the Spurs.