HoopsHype Russell Westbrook rumors

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February 28, 2015 Updates

Westbrook was seen being escorted to an evaluation room roughly 30 minutes after the game ended. Internet pictures showed a dent in the side of Westbrook's face, right around his right cheek bone. The Thunder will have an off day Saturday before ending this three-game road trip Sunday against the Los Angeles Lakers. Oklahoman

February 27, 2015 Updates
February 26, 2015 Updates

There are just two games in the NBA today, so the pool is pretty shallow. All of the teams feature upstart offenses, highlighted by Russell Westbrook. He'll eat up 18% of your cap at $9,000, but he has netted at least 45 FantasyScore points in nine of 10 games. He has scored at least 50 in six of those. Stephen Curry ($9,000; 18.0%) came back from an ankle issue with 48 fantasy points Tuesday night, and he's a nightly option as well. HoopsHype

February 23, 2015 Updates

On Sunday evening, an injured Kobe Bryant co-hosted ESPN’s Grantland Basketball Hour with Bill Simmons and Jalen Rose. And on it, the trio talked a ton about Russell Westbrook and the Thunder. There were some interesting discussions, particularly when Kobe was presented with the idea that the Thunder is now Russell Westbrook’s — and not Kevin Durant’s — team. Bryant scoffed at the notion. “I have a hard time understanding those kind of conversations — the ‘Whose team is this?’” Bryant said. “If you think about it, the irony is we want players to be unselfish, we want them to be part of a group, we want them to be part of a team, but yet when they win, we’re quick to say, ‘Well, it wasn’t your team, so your championship is devalued.’ It makes no sense. You can’t have it both ways. We can’t sit here and say ‘Whose team is it?’" Oklahoman

"The fact of the matter is they both have different personalities, they can drive the team in their respective ways. The key is for the rest of the team to understand what personality does what and what areas of the game can that personality benefit us.” Oklahoman

Kobe on the criticism Westbrook faces… “I don’t think Russell pays much attention to it. I didn’t. Because you have your blinders on. And your completely focused on what your team needs to do and what you have to do to help that team be successful. Russell, I believe, has the same mentality that I have had. Which is that it doesn’t matter. I’m going to go out here and play hard regardless of what they say.” Oklahoman

Did OKC feel any pressure to make moves to keep Kevin Durant happy as the clock ticks toward his free agency in 2016? Well, sort of. Durant and Russell Westbrook are the unmistakable faces of the franchise. Certainly, every move OKC makes is to put the best players around their two superstars. But the moves aren't made out of fear. OKC doesn't operate "like, geez, are these guys gonna leave? Are these guys gonna be happy?," a league source said. NBA.com

February 22, 2015 Updates
February 21, 2015 Updates

There are many big names in the fantasy basketball pool tonight. However, Oklahoma City Thunder SF Kevin Durant ($9,300 FantasyScore salary; 18.6% of your cap) didn't look healthy Thursday, and Charlotte defends the position well. Thunder PG Russell Westbrook ($9,000; 18.0%) continues to be a must-start. Houston Rockets SG James Harden ($9,300; 18.6%) has a decent matchup against a Toronto Raptors team that has struggled in two of its last five games. Chicago Bulls PF Pau Gasol ($8,200; 16.4%) has a so-so matchup against Phoenix. New Orleans Pelicans PF Anthony Davis ($9,400; 18.8%) is coming off a disappointing 30.3-point effort on FantasyScore Friday, but he faces the reeling Miami Heat. As usual, undervalued players will be critical to allotting space for all the available studs. HoopsHype

February 20, 2015 Updates

On the surface, it seems as though the trade request Jackson's agent made on Wednesday -- first reported by Yahoo and confirmed by a source -- was what frayed his relationship with Durant and some teammates. But his standing with teammates, primarily the leaders of the locker room, had been deteriorating throughout the season. The request simply hammered home what everyone in the organization knew since October: Reggie Jackson didn't want to be there. ESPN.com

In the locker room, the divide was growing. Injuries to Durant were keeping the team from finding a rhythm, and without the band-aid of winning to heal wounds, the Thunder's chemistry was suffering. The cliquish aspect was impossible not to notice. Jackson, Perry Jones and Jeremy Lamb all had lockers together on one side; Durant, Westbrook and Ibaka were on the other. Jackson, Lamb and Jones are close, shooting pregame together and often leaving the arena together. All three had also fallen out of favor with Brooks. ESPN.com

And hours before general manager Sam Presti pulled the trigger, Russell Westbrook – one of the franchise’s two cornerstone – said he and Kevin Durant had no desire to be consulted on the decision. “Not my job,” Westbrook said. “My job is to come out and play. We have a great general manager, great owner and great coach who have done a great job thus far putting this team together. So I’m pretty sure they know what’s best for us.” When asked if Presti ever comes to them to gather their opinion, Westbrook reiterated his previous answer in the most Westbrook way possible. “I don’t want to repeat the same answer, so whatever I just said last time use it as that answer,” he said. Oklahoman

February 19, 2015 Updates
February 18, 2015 Updates

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