Westbrook injury reaction
The Rockets were dismayed to see OKC's Russell Westbrook go down with a torn meniscus.
"I feel bad for Russell," Kevin McHale said. "He's a hell of a competitor. I hate to see anybody get hurt. He's a great, competitive kid who's part of a team that has the best record in the Western Conference. I feel bad like I'd feel for anybody."
The Thunder announced on Friday that Westbrook will need surgery after getting hurt in the second quarter of Wednesday's Game Two. One play that stands out in that quarter is when Patrick Beverley dove for the ball as Westbrook was about to call timeout. Westbrook was knocked down on the play. When he got up, he had a slight limp and did not look pleased.
"I saw it when he kind of limped off and he smacked his hand against the scorer's table, kind of angry," James Harden said of his former teammate. "It was an unfortunate play."
Harden noticed no difference in Westbrook as the point guard stayed in the game and finished with 29 points.
"We always messed around with him that he has a create-a-player body. He has a video-game body," Harden said. "He's so strong to where his veins are always popping out, so I thought he was normal. I thought he was regular."
For the Rockets, as tough as it is to see any player get hurt, the play in question seems relatively routine.
"When the offensive opponent thinks they're taking a timeout, the guy tries to go for the steal, that happens in so many occasions, not just last game, but it's going to happen after so many years in the league," Harden said. "So it's just an unfortunate situation."
"Patrick tried to steal the ball before he called timeout. It's not a dirty play at all," Chandler Parsons said. "It's unfortunate that (Westbrook) got hurt, but it's not like Patrick did it on purpose."
As for Beverley's thoughts?
"I haven't really seen (the play) yet," Beverley said. "It's definitely unfortunate. I was definitely looking forward to playing Westbrook again tomorrow, get to battle again. It's just an unfortunate situation.
"I don't go out there and try to hurt anybody. If you know me, I play at one speed: that's fast. I crash for offensive rebounds. I was just trying to make a play on the ball before they called timeout. A play like that, I continue to say, is unfortunate."
Beverley was asked to describe the play more in-depth.
"I tried to play on the basketball and get the steal before he called timeout," Beverley said. "I had no intention at all of trying to injure anybody. Anybody who knows me knows that's not my type of game."
As far as his receiving threats on Twitter as a result of this, to Beverley, this is something he's used to with his experience playing in Russia.
"I've been in incidents in Europe where guys throws quarters at my face. I've had blood gushing down," Beverley said. "So I'm kind of used to it. Like I said, it was nothing intentional."
In the meantime, the Thunder will have to make do without their three-time NBA All Star who finished sixth in the league in scoring (23,2 points) and seventh in assists (7.4 assists).
"It's one of my friends," Harden said. "This is the playoffs, but just to see him get injured, it's kind of a disappointment."