Mike D’Antoni reacts to Russell Westbrook’s debut with Rockets
In his first game with the Houston Rockets, Russell Westbrook was his usual productive self. The former MVP finished with 13 points, two rebounds and six assists in 21 minutes against the Toronto Raptors while shooting 4-of-10 from the field and 1-of-6 from beyond the arc.
Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni liked what he saw from Westbrook, who was playing his first NBA game since undergoing two offseason procedures.
Coach D'Antoni after practice on Russell Westbrook's #Rockets debut: “He hasn’t played all summer. That was the first exhibition game, and I thought he was very good, very athletic. His knee was good. So a lot of positive things and he’ll get better from here.”
— Alykhan Bijani (@Rockets_Insider) October 9, 2019
Russell Westbrook had a minor surgery on his surgically repaired right knee after the 2019 playoffs ended. He also had a procedure done on his left hand to repair a torn ligament in a finger.
Last season for the Oklahoma City Thunder, Westbrook averaged a triple-double for the third consecutive season. The All-Star put up 22.9 points, 11.1 rebounds and 10.7 assists while shooting 42.8 percent from the field and 65.6 percent from the free-throw line.
Westbrook is one of the fastest players in the NBA. The new Rockets guard is a blur in the open court, impossible to stay in front of and can get to the rim at will while finishing in heavy traffic.
When Westbrook is pushing the ball on fast breaks, he is expected to collapse the defense when he gets to the basket, which should free up the Rockets’ shooters for wide-open looks from beyond the arc.