Skip to content

Thunder to rest Russell Westbrook on certain back-to-back sets to finish the season

Mar 15, 2014, 5:00 PM EDT

Russell Westbrook Getty Images

The Thunder currently hold a record of 48-17, a game back of the Spurs for the best overall mark in the league.

Finishing the year on top of that race would guarantee home court advantage throughout the playoffs and into the Finals should OKC make it that far, and it’s a goal most teams would kill to have a shot of reaching at this late stage of the season.

But keeping the big picture in mind, the Thunder aren’t planning on going all out to get there.

With a high volume of back-to-back sets the rest of the way, the team is more concerned with preserving its stars for a postseason run, which means willingly taking Russell Westbrook out of the lineup for a handful of games the rest of the way.

From Randy Renner of NBA.com:

The Oklahoma City Thunder’s closing schedule is heavy with back-to-back sets, six of them over the last month of the season, and Thunder head coach Scott Brooks on Saturday said once again that point guard Russell Westbrook will not play in both games of “some” of those sets.

“We have a plan in place” as to which games Westbrook will sit , said Brooks, but he wouldn’t reveal it Saturday after practice.”I’ll let you know at the appropriate time,” he added. …

“We had a plan in place early on when we brought him back and we wanna stick with that,” Brooks said. “We just wanna, while we can, get some time where he can rest in between games.”

There’s been no word of Westbrook experiencing any swelling or discomfort in his surgically-repaired knee, so this appears to be an overly-cautious maneuver by Brooks and the team’s medical staff.

The Thunder play back-to-backs sets over their next four games, the first of which comes at home against Dallas on Sunday and then on the road in Chicago the very next night. The killer set comes on April 3 and 4, at home against the Spurs followed by a road trip in Houston.

We’ll see what the standings look like when each of these games approaches to see if things change, but it appears as though Brooks has already made up his mind.

Latest Posts
  1. Man arrested after fight over who is better, Michael Jordan or LeBron James

    Apr 20, 2015, 8:50 PM EDT

    Miami Heat v Charlotte Bobcats - Game Four Getty Images

    I could try to use logic and suggest that discussing the complete legacy of Jordan with the incomplete legacy of James is a fool’s errand. But this is the Internet, logic is not always welcome.

  2. PBT Extra matchup to watch: Marcus Smart needs to take on Kyrie Irving challenge

    Apr 20, 2015, 7:50 PM EDT

    Kyrie Irving Kyrie Irving

    What you want to see as a Boston fan is Smart embrace the challenge.

  3. PBT Extra matchup to watch: Pelican guards need to stay with Curry, Thompson

    Apr 20, 2015, 5:32 PM EDT

    New Orleans Pelicans v Golden State Warriors - Game One New Orleans Pelicans v Golden State Warriors - Game One

    Also, Tyreke Evans is a game-time decision after his injury in the playoff opener.

  4. Clippers will rebrand this summer, new potential logos leaked

    Apr 20, 2015, 4:06 PM EDT

    Screen-shot-2015-04-17-at-10.35.11-PM

    The Clippers need a rebranding, but the leaked images are not winning over new fans.

  5. Report: One Trail Blazers player gives LaMarcus Aldridge just 50-50 chance of re-signing

    Apr 20, 2015, 11:57 AM EDT

    Portland Trail Blazers v Memphis Grizzlies - Game One Getty Images

    And he’s not the only Portland player worried about Aldridge leaving

  6. Dirk Nowitzki trying to fix a working microphone highlight of NBA playoffs so far (video)

    Apr 20, 2015, 10:01 AM EDT

    Dirk Nowitzki Dirk Nowitzki

    And by fix, I mean smashing it and then tossing it aside when that doesn’t work

  7. DeAndre Jordan owns paint, makes Clippers’ Game 1 win possible

    Apr 20, 2015, 8:00 AM EDT

    The Spurs shot 14-of-28 inside three feet, 20-of-44 inside the paint overall.

  8. Clippers put on offensive showcase, take Game 1 vs. Spurs

    Apr 20, 2015, 1:24 AM EDT

    cd0ymzcznguwzdbhnduynddiytjhm2yyzthlmtjjotqwyyznpwzjmwrizjnlotc1mdjjodi5zmuxyjjkzge2mjyyzjq3 AP

    The Clippers hit their shots and the Spurs did not.

Featured video

Can Michael Carter-Williams slow Derrick Rose?
Top 10 NBA Player Searches
  1. D. Rose (5734)
  2. K. Durant (5594)
  3. C. Parsons (5508)
  4. P. George (5411)
  5. M. Conley (5228)
  1. T. Splitter (4931)
  2. L. James (4910)
  3. K. Bryant (4667)
  4. N. Batum (4608)
  5. S. Curry (4541)