Rockets’ Russell Westbrook defends ‘taunting’ act after getting 14th tech
If Houston Rockets point guard Russell Westbrook is known for one thing, it’s his passion. And while that passion has served Westbrook well throughout his 12-year career, it can sometimes get him into some sticky situations.
On Wednesday against the Memphis Grizzlies, Westbrook received his 14th technical foul of the season after staring down Grizzlies guard De’Anthony Melton after a crafty layup.
Westbrook was in disbelief after the foul and had to be calmed down by teammate James Harden after the play.
Russell Westbrook (@russwest44) gets a technical for this 👇. Appeared to be a ridiculous call. Bill Worrell predicted on @ATTSportsNetSW the NBA will rescind it. Seconds after that Russell goes in for the slam & enjoyed it for sure. pic.twitter.com/rjU5FHRwpq
— Mark Berman (@MarkBermanFox26) February 27, 2020
After the game, the 31-year-old spoke with media regarding the foul per Michael Shapiro of SINow. In the interview, the Rockets star admitted that he is an emotional player but reiterated his innocence on the play.
Despite the technical foul, Westbrook was still able to drop 33 points, nine rebounds and eight assists in a 140-112 blowout victory.
Russell Westbrook on receiving his 14th technical after being called for taunting.
"I'm going to go out and keep competing. I'm an emotional guy, play with a lot of emotion. But that wasn't a technical foul." pic.twitter.com/UrHdAs1kvW
— Michael Shapiro (@mshap2) February 27, 2020
The former MVP was traded from the Oklahoma City Thunder to the Rockets this offseason and has picked up where he left off in OKC averaging 27.2 points, 7.9 rebounds and 7.2 assists per game while shooting 46.6 percent from the field and 24.6 percent from deep.
If Westbrook gets two more technical fouls this season, the veteran guard will be suspended for one game by the NBA league office.