Thursday, 21 June 2012
FINALS FEATURES: RUSSELL WESTBROOK-I AM THE WEST
(Originally Published In 2011)
It's going to be hard to keep up with Russell's athletic.
By TIM DAVID HARVEY
When it comes to the best Point Guard in the NBA a few years ago the talk of the league-from the courts to the schools and the work places to the playgrounds-was between magic men Deron Williams and Chris Paul. Nowadays the water cooler and locker conversations have been re-filled and stacked with barrels of debate between young guns Rajon Rondo and Derrick Rose, who already have championship's and MVP's to their names. Still with all this talk on the winners this doesn't render the rest of the points losers. In the talk of the greatest, more then just some breath should be saved for Russell Westbrook. The leagues one-time greatest secret who's game is now speaking volumes.
Turn it up and tune in because Oklahoma City Thunder's number two is focussed on the associations number one goal; winning. This guy is no longer the Robin to Kevin Durant's Batman, forming a one-two punch with the smooth, scoring machine that's ready to take hits at LeBron and Wade, Kobe and Gasol and Carmelo and Stoudemire. It's about to be a dark night for the opposition as this team rises. Westbrook polices the blue and white's with a 'pass first, shoot later', courtesy, professionalism and respect to his team-mates. This All-Star is all-team and box-score with last season averages of 21.9 points, 8.3 assists, 4.6 rebounds and 1.9 steals per contest. These are the type of statistics that engrave big numbers and names in the annals of sports history. Still Durant's the leading man and his supporting actor knows this, but that doesn't mean Russell can't step in and be the star when the script calls for it. That's why Westbrook has even more plays wrote for him as his clutch plays lead to more happy endings then Adam Sandler flicks. 'Brook's cinematic plays are the reason some Hollywood stars are flocking to the city of Oklahoma to watch real ball.
Basketball is putting this town on the map, and Russell and Kevin are holding the key's as the 'Ford Centre' refuels night after night. With this perfect pair and a strong OKC team featuring big talents like Kendrick Perkins, Serge Ibaka and more the one-time Seattle Supersonics really are a different team and it all starts with the franchise's truest Point Guard since Gary Payton. Now the gloves are off. With the Lakers getting older and the San Antonio Spurs getting colder right now the only thing standing in Oklahoma's way is the West and leagues best Dallas Mavericks.
As for Westbrook the only small guard that's more on point then him out in the wild West is the Hornets Chris Paul who may soon turn New Orleans into New York. Still Russ' skill level is a lot closer then those cities even when read on a map. Westbrook's path to being right there with the beasts of the East isn't a long one either. Deron, Derrick and Rajon are about to have some company. This former fourth pick of the draft may be four Points away from being the NBA's best P.G. but with strength like Rose, speed like Rondo, skill like Paul and toughness like Williams, Westbrook shares more with the best then a bright future. Plus his versatile repertoire makes parts of his game better then those above him. Russell has a lot of aces up his sleeve ready to serve his competition. Advantage Westbrook.
This UCLA graduate and Californian college star is making his mark on the league like bruiser and fellow Bruin Kevin Love. Both have strong games primed to leave haters comments weak. A potent force, this former L.A. king is built for the gym and clutch like Lakers guard Derek Fisher and is born to be a serious star like L.A.'s other guard. Kobe better watch out, a shaggy haired, blonde bomber isn't his only concern. This bald, bold guard is ready to shave some years off for the Lakers dominance saying goodbye to a dynasty like Dame while he dashes through the defence.
Russell is quick, strong, hungry and full of talent. Once this raw star overcomes some inconsistencies look for his game to be polished into something pure and then his Oklahoma partner and team will be so much more. The hype has been justified but as for the final result we have no idea what's in store. This number zero really is something, its the competition that is left like nothing. Repping the West harder then his tough game, the forecast of the Thunder's future with Russ calls for 'reign'. The rest of the league won't have an umbrella strong enough when the former Seattle team's storm is in full force. The weather of the league is changing. Let's hope the NBA's ready.
This Long Beach native is the youngest star to come out of that area since Snoop Dogg and now the whole world knows the name of this 22 year old guard. It won't be long before the cheers ring out for Russell like Norm. Right now he's the best young guard in the West bar non. The rest of the league isn't waiting either, as this before-his-time star has arrived to the contender party as early as he arrives to practice to hoist up shots while everyone else is busy playing outside the courts. Rest-assured that Russ is determined to be the last one to leave the gym too. Whether it's in practice gear or championship tee's. Then it'll be him and not his critics with the last word.