Rockets star Russell Westbrook expected to miss start of playoffs
Houston Rockets star Russell Westbrook is expected to miss the first few games of the upcoming playoffs, according to Jonathan Feigen of The Houston Chronicle. The Rockets point guard suffered a quad injury on Wednesday, one which several people within the organization thought of as more than a bruise.
Westbrook suffered a strain on his quadriceps muscle and was immediately ruled out of Friday’s final seeding game against the Philadelphia 76ers after waking up with soreness on Wednesday, a day after returning from his initial injury. Upon undergoing an MRI, the Rockets decided to proceed with due caution, despite him not having any trouble with the injury during Tuesday’s game against the San Antonio Spurs or immediately after.
Westbrook even said after that game that he was confident he’d play on Friday and go through the weekend’s practices to be at full strength for the start of the playoffs next week. That, of course, did not take place upon feeling sore on Wednesday.
The All-Star guard had a rollercoaster upon arriving to the bubble, at first delayed after contracting the coronavirus and then playing three games before the thigh strain became an issue. He laced them up for 26 minutes against the Spurs, looking like the Westbrook of old, but sat out the second half of a back-to-back before the MRI revealed the strain.
“We’ll see how he responds,” Rockets head coach Mike D’Antoni said after Wednesday’s game against the Indiana Pacers. “We’ll just see next week.”
Westbrook is averaging 27.2 points per game while burying a career-best 47.2% of his shots. The veteran dynamo took some time to acclimate to his new team after undergoing offseason knee surgery, but he’s averaged 30.6 points per game on 51.5% shooting from the floor with 7.9 rebounds and 7.0 assists in his last 27 games.