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Westbrook has knee surgery Tuesday, will miss 4-6 weeks of regular season

Oct 1, 2013, 1:32 PM EDT

Oklahoma City Thunder guard Westbrook looks on during a timeout against the Los Angeles Lakers in the second half of their NBA basketball game in Oklahoma City Reuters

This is bad news for the Thunder — not “the season is lost, woe is me” kind of news but for a team with championship aspirations it is a step back.

Russell Westbrook had arthroscopic surgery on his right knee to reduce swelling on Tuesday, the team announced.

The big news — it pushes back his recovery timetable to the point he will miss a month to six weeks of the regular season. He will be back somewhere around Thanksgiving, and even then history suggests it will take a month or so of playing in games to get his feel back.

Westbrook first suffered an injury in a collision with Patrick Beverly of the Rockets during the playoffs. With Westbrook out and defenses able to load up on Kevin Durant, the Thunder were eliminated in the second round.

The Tuesday surgery showed the meniscus healed properly but there were other things to be cleaned up, Thunder GM Sam Presti said in a conference call, as reported by Darnell Mayberry of the Oklahoman.

“The origin of the swelling that was discovered was caused by the presence of a loose stitch…”

“Although we lost a little bit of time, we gained a tremendous amount of confidence in the recovery and the knee itself…”

“We all know (Westbrook). His work and his diligence through this process has been nothing short of spectacular.”

Westbrook — an All-Star and Olympian who averaged 23.2 points and 7.4 assists a game last season — should be back for the second half of the season and a playoff run. In a deep Western Conference the lack of Westbrook to start the season could cost the Thunder playoff seeding slots.

While he is out a lot falls on the shoulders of Reggie Jackson the third-year player out of Boston College who averaged 14 minutes a game last season but was going to be asked to do a lot more this year with Kevin Martin (the replacement for James Harden) gone. Behind Jackson are Derek Fisher and rookie Diante Garrett.

  1. innovativethinking87 - Oct 1, 2013 at 1:38 PM

    Well thats what happens when cheap owners and franchises dont want to resign a player of James Hardens talent. Give that problem to say Paul Allen and he’d happily eat the tax for breakfast…

    The curse of James Harden continues…

    • grapenutz08 - Oct 1, 2013 at 5:48 PM

      So trading Harden caused Russ to get injured???


      • innovativethinking87 - Oct 1, 2013 at 8:22 PM

        No smart ass. Locking up a top 10 player like Harden would have gave comfortable insurance in a situation such as this one..

        Instead cheapy OKC owners started penny pinching when a ring was right there for the taken. Kinda bites you in the ass leaving a major market like Seattle for the “big city of dreams” that Oklahoma City is…

        The curse of James Harden continues….

      • grapenutz08 - Oct 6, 2013 at 1:56 PM Harden + Russ + KD = automatic ring??? since when?? and wouldn’t they have to trade Ibaka, who made them a top 5 defensive team?? Let it go Seattle

  2. steelers33 - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:01 PM

    Westbrook is gonna have to slow it down and rely less on his athleticism and more on the fundamentals. These explosive players seem to get knee problems ( like D. Rose and Dwade.) Slow it down Russ.

    • drewvargas23 - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:30 PM


    • detroitbasketballfan - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:43 PM

      Well the injury wasnt really caused by a lot of cutting to the rim. He just got took out. But he should take it easy the first 6 weeks back

  3. larrybrown43 - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:11 PM

    I’m sure his doctors discussed how pointless the NBA regular season is so there’s no need to rush him back.

  4. drewvargas23 - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:23 PM

    Career gone!! Brooklyn nets all the way!! U heard!!

  5. hwatt - Oct 1, 2013 at 2:26 PM

    Hey wait where are all the guys who said Westbrook was just in KD’s way and needed to gtfo. They should be saying staytfo!! I know I some somewhere…

  6. tbone102469 - Oct 1, 2013 at 3:21 PM

    Diante Garrett is not a rookie as he played for the Phoenix Suns last season.

  7. money2long - Oct 1, 2013 at 3:50 PM

    this will hurt the season.

  8. bkgrizz62 - Oct 1, 2013 at 3:55 PM

    Skeletor jr. Damn!

  9. bkgrizz62 - Oct 1, 2013 at 3:56 PM

    Skeletor jr.

  10. legend30 - Oct 1, 2013 at 4:19 PM

    There goes the 1st seed for the western conference. Clippers, Warriors, Spurs needs to take advantage of this opportunity. Durant is going to be averaging 37.4 points per game…

  11. antistratfordian - Oct 1, 2013 at 4:46 PM

    That’s bad news. Get well soon, Westy!

    Time for Durant to show us what he’s made of. He likes to talk a big game – and whine about always being 2nd – well now is a chance for KD to take what he wants instead of waiting for it to be given to him.

  12. kb2408 - Oct 1, 2013 at 6:22 PM

    What did Westbrook say about the Thunder not needing to replace Harden? I beg to differ. I still say that trade will forever haunt the franchise.

  13. oldcat157 - Oct 2, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    Brah got an ugly mug…

  14. gmsalpha - Oct 2, 2013 at 12:35 PM

    I love how it says “Reggie Jackson, the third year player out of Boston College…”. Without that extra info, I was certain we were talking about the baseball player.

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