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Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook Rockets
Westbrook during a Rockets game.
Born November 12, 1988 (1988-11-12) (age 31)
Long Beach, California
Nationality Flag of the United States American
Physical stats
Listed height 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m)
Listed weight 200 lbs (91 kg)
Professional basketball career
No. 0 – Houston Rockets
Position Point guard
League NBA
NBA Draft 2008 / Round: 1 / Pick: 4
Selected by the Seattle SuperSonics
Playing career 2008–present (12 years)
High school/College basketball career
High School Leuzinger
(Lawndale, California)
College UCLA (2006–2008)
Career history
20082019 Oklahoma City Thunder
2019–present Houston Rockets
Career highlights and awards

Russell Westbrook III (November 12, 1988) is an American basketball player who plays for the Houston Rockets of the National Basketball Association (NBA).

He is a nine-time NBA All-Star and earned the NBA Most Valuable Player Award for the 2016–17 season. He is also an eight-time All-NBA Team member, led the league in scoring in 2014–15 and 2016–17, and won back-to-back NBA All-Star Game Most Valuable Player awards in 2015 and 2016. In 2017, the year he won the league MVP award, Westbrook became one of two players in NBA history to average a triple-double for a season, along with Oscar Robertson in 1962. He also set a record for the most triple-doubles in a season, with 42. He went on to average a triple-double the following two seasons also, as well as lead the league in assists and become the first player to lead the league in points and assists in multiple seasons. He is currently second all time in career triple-doubles in NBA history.

Westbrook played college basketball for the UCLA Bruins and earned third-team all-conference honors in the Pac-10. He was selected with the fourth overall pick in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics, who then relocated to Oklahoma City six days later to become the Oklahoma City Thunder. Westbrook has represented the United States national team twice, winning gold medals in the 2010 FIBA World Championship and the 2012 Olympics. After spending his first 11 seasons with the Thunder, he was traded to the Houston Rockets in July 2019.

Early Years

Westbrook was born in Long Beach, California to parents Russell and Shannon Horton. He has one younger brother, Raynard, and has said that he admires former Los Angeles Lakers great Earvin "Magic" Johnson. Growing up in Lawndale, Westbrook was a childhood friend of Khelcey Barrs, a talented young small forward who had been attracting interest from major college basketball schools as a 6-foot-6, 200 pound high school sophomore. However, Barrs collapsed and died from cardiomegaly after playing a series of late night basketball games in 2004.

High School

Westbrook entered Leuzinger High School as a point guard who stood only 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m) tall and weighed only 140 pounds (64 kg), although he did have large (size 14) feet. He did not start on his school's varsity team until his junior year,[11] and did not receive his first college recruiting letter until the summer before his senior year. Westbrook grew to his adult height of 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) that same summer.

During his senior year, Westbrook averaged 25.1 points, 8.7 rebounds, 3.1 steals, and 2.3 assists and helped lead them to a 25–4 record. That same season, he recorded 14 double-doubles, scored 30 or more points on eight separate occasions, and registered a career-best 51 points at Carson on January 6, 2006. Westbrook did not attract much attention from top college basketball programs until head coach Ben Howland offered him a scholarship to play for the UCLA Bruins after Jordan Farmar declared for the NBA draft.

College

UCLA

In his two years of playing for the UCLA Bruins, Westbrook wore number 0. In his freshman year Westbrook backed up Darren Collison and was primarily used as a defender and energy player off the bench due to his athleticism and lack of passing and shooting skills. In his freshman year Westbrook averaged 3.4 points, 0.8 rebounds and 0.7 assists in 36 games. After Darren Collison was injured, Westbrook's role on the team expanded. Westbrook saw his minutes increase significantly, and he finished the season playing in 39 games, starting in 34 of them. In the year Westbrook averaged 12.7 points, 3.9 rebounds, 4.7 assists and 1.6 steals. The team advanced to the Final Four each year, losing to Florida in 2007, 76–66. In the game, Westbrook played 8 minutes, scoring two points. In 2008, they lost 78–63 to the University of Memphis, who were led by Derrick Rose, Chris Douglas-Roberts and Joey Dorsey. In the game, Westbrook scored 22 points, to go along with 3 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals. At UCLA, Westbrook played basketball with several NBA players. In his sophomore year Westbrook was named All-Pac-10 Third Team and won Pac-10 Defensive Player of the Year. At UCLA, Westbrook played with Kevin Love, who was also his roommate, as well as Darren Collison, Arron Afflalo and Luc Richard Mbah a Moute. After two years at UCLA, Westbrook decided to enter his name in the 2008 NBA draft.

College Year GP GS SPG BPG RPG APG PPG FG% FT% 3P%
UCLA 2006–07 36 1 0.4 0.02 0.8 0.7 3.4 .457% .548% .409%
UCLA 2007–08 39 34 1.6 0.2 3.9 4.3 12.7 .465% .713% .338%

NBA career

Draft

In a press conference on April 17, 2008, Westbrook announced his intention to leave college to enter the 2008 NBA Draft. He was taken fourth overall by the Oklahoma City Thunder, immediately after his college teammate, Kevin Love, who was selected by the Memphis Grizzlies.

Oklahoma City Thunder (2008–2019)

2008–09 NBA season

He was selected 4th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics (which then relocated to Oklahoma City and became the Oklahoma City Thunder six days later) He signed with the team on July 5, 2008 along with D. J. White. He played with fellow Bruin Earl Watson on the Thunder team.

Westbrook was named the Western Conference Rookie of the month for December and February. In December, Westbrook averaged 15.5 points, 5.1 assists, and 5.1 rebounds. In February, Westbrook averaged 20.6 points, 5.9 assists, and 6.1 rebounds. On February 1, 2009, Westbrook scored 34 points in an overtime loss to the Sacramento Kings. He made 7 of 18 field goals and 20 of 22 free throws. His 20 free throws were the most by a Kings opponent since the franchise relocated to Sacramento, California. He was also a candidate for the 2009 Slam Dunk Contest but lost in fan voting to Rudy Fernandez of the Portland Trail Blazers.

On March 2, 2009 Westbrook recorded a triple double with 17 points, 10 rebounds and 10 assists. He was the first rookie to do so since Chris Paul in the 2005–06 season, and the third rookie player in Sonics/Thunder franchise history: Art Harris 1968–69 and Gary Payton in 1990–91. He finished fourth in the 2008/09 NBA Rookie of the Year voting behind Derrick Rose (Chicago Bulls), O. J. Mayo (Memphis Grizzlies) and Brook Lopez (New Jersey Nets). Westbrook was named to the NBA's all-rookie first team, along with fellow UCLA classmate Kevin Love, who was named to the second team.

2009–10 NBA season

In his second year the Thunder made a huge turnaround from their first season, qualifying for the playoffs with a 50–32 record. During the season Westbrook averaged 16.1 points, 8.0 assists, and 4.9 rebounds. Westbrook became a significantly better passer; his improvement in the passing department was instrumental in the Thunder's turnaround. The Thunder were eliminated by the eventual world champion Los Angeles Lakers. In the series Westbrook stepped up his play, averaging 20.5 points, 6 rebounds and 6 assists.

2010–11 NBA season

On November 12, 2010, his 22nd birthday, Westbrook recorded 36 points, 7 rebounds, and 7 assists against the Portland Trail Blazers. Fourteen days afterward, on November 26, Westbrook scored 43 points, to go with 8 rebounds and 8 assists, against the Indiana Pacers.

On November 26, 2010, Westbrook scored 43 points against the Indiana Pacers. Westbrook was chosen as a Western Conference reserve for the 2011 NBA All-Star Game.

On December 1, 2010, he scored 38 points with 9 assists and achieved a new career-high of 15 rebounds in a triple-overtime win over the New Jersey Nets, a game played without Thunder co-star Kevin Durant due to injury trouble.

Westbrook finished the season improving in just about every statistical category, averaging 21.9 points, 8.3 assists, 4.6 rebounds, and 1.9 steals. Westbrook was named to the All-NBA Second Team for his strong year. The Thunder finished the season at 55–27, eventually losing to the eventual world champion Dallas Mavericks. Throughout the playoffs, Westbrook averaged 23.8 points, 6.4 assists and 5.4 rebounds.

2011–12 NBA season

On January 19, 2012 Westbrook and the Oklahoma City Thunder agreed to a 5 year $80 million extension. On February 19, 2012, he scored 40 points in a win over the Denver Nuggets. On March 23, 2012, Westbrook scored a career-high 45 points in a double overtime win over the Minnesota Timberwolves 149–140. Westbrook was again voted to the All-NBA Second Team and was selected to the 2012 NBA All-Star Game.

The Thunder reached the 2012 NBA Finals, but lost in five games to the Miami Heat. In Game 4 of the finals Westbrook scored a playoff career high 43 points while shooting 20/32 from the field in a loss.

2012–13 NBA season

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2013–14 NBA season

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2014–15 NBA season

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2015–16 NBA season

In the 2015-16 season, Westbrook and Kevin Durant lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to the Western Conference Finals, but lost to the Golden State Warriors in a 7 game series.

2016–17 NBA season

In the 2016-17, Westbrook had the greatest season in his career and perhaps one of the greatest in league history. Westbrook averaged a triple double with 30 points, 10 assists, and 10 rebounds and leading his OKC team to a 47-35 record. He then won the Most Valuable Player Award later on in June 2017.

Houston Rockets (2019–present)

On July 11, 2019, Westbrook was traded to the Houston Rockets for Chris Paul, two first-round picks, and some pick-swaps.

International career

Senior national team

In 2010 he took part in the FIBA World Championships held in Istanbul, Turkey. He played a pivotal role off the bench with his hustle and energy. USA won gold for the first time since 1994.

Westbrook later played at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, where he won a gold medal.

Player profile

Westbrook is a point guard. Westbrook has established himself as an elite athlete who constantly attacks the basket. When attacking the basket, Westbrook is also known for being able to pull up for the medium range jump shot or pass it out to an open teammate. Westbrook is capable of initiating the pick and roll, averaging 6.8 assists per game throughout his first four seasons. At 6 feet 3 inches, Westbrook is an above average rebounder, averaging 4.7 rebounds throughout his first four seasons. Westbrook is constantly able to get to the free throw line, contributing to the average of 19.0 points per game throughout his first four seasons. A minor weakness cited in Westbrook's ability is his three-point percentage; he has averaged .289 on three-point field goal percentage for his first four seasons.

NBA career statistics

Legend
GP Games played GS Games started MPG Minutes per game
FG% Field-goal percentage 3P% 3-point field-goal percentage FT% Free-throw percentage
RPG Rebounds per game APG Assists per game SPG Steals per game
BPG Blocks per game PPG Points per game Bold Career high

Regular season

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2008–09 Oklahoma City 82 65 32.5 .398 .271 .815 4.9 5.3 1.3 .2 15.3
2009–10 Oklahoma City 82 82 34.3 .418 .221 .780 4.9 8.0 1.3 .4 16.1
2010–11 Oklahoma City 82 82 34.7 .442 .330 .842 4.6 8.3 1.9 .4 21.9
2011–12 Oklahoma City 66 66 35.3 .457 .316 .823 4.6 5.5 1.7 .3 23.6
Career 312 295 34.2 .430 .289 .818 4.7 6.8 1.6 .3 19.0
All-Star 2 0 20.5 .552 .200 .000 5.0 2.0 1.0 .0 16.5

Playoffs

Year Team GP GS MPG FG% 3P% FT% RPG APG SPG BPG PPG
2010 Oklahoma City 6 6 35.3 .473 .417 .842 6.0 6.0 1.7 .2 20.5
2011 Oklahoma City 17 17 37.5 .394 .292 .852 5.4 6.4 1.4 .4 23.8
2012 Oklahoma City 20 20 38.4 .435 .277 .802 5.5 5.8 1.6 .4 23.1
Career 43 43 37.6 .422 .296 .832 5.5 6.1 1.5 .4 23.0

Triple-doubles

Number Date Opponent Box Score Points Rebounds Assists Steals Notes
1 March 2, 2009 vs. Dallas Mavericks W 97–86 17 10 10 2 1 block
2 February 21, 2010 at Minnesota Timberwolves W 109–107 22 10 14 2
3 December 31, 2010 vs. Atlanta Hawks W 103–94 23 10 10 2
4 January 13, 2011 vs. Orlando Magic W 125–124 32 10 13 1 2 blocks
5 January 28, 2011 vs. Washington Wizards W 124–117 35 13 13 1 2 blocks
6 (PO) May 15, 2011 vs. Memphis Grizzlies W 105–90 14 10 14 0 Semifinals, Ga
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