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Thursday, August 12th, 2010 at 3:12 pm  |  48 responses

Photo: Russell Westbrook on the Rise

The spotlight’s on the Thunder PG.

Russell WestbrookPhoto by Atiba Jefferson
Originally published in SLAM 138

You named him Russell “Wild, Wild” Westbrook, but let’s be honest… that’s never going to catch on. Instead of using bandwidth on choosing a nickname, let’s focus on dude’s game. His third season in the L will almost certainly be a breakout year, as the Thunder rise to the cream of the Western Conference crop. Pay close attention to him now, before Westbrook’s risen to All-Star status.

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  • Neil

    The illest!! Glad to see love for my man

  • Sparker

    dude acquitted himself BETTER THAN ANY OTHER PLAYER against the lakers in the playoffs, far as i’m concerned. and he once dunked on a guy who’s 7’7″

  • http://slamonline.com GotHandles?

    BEAST MODE

  • unrel

    my favorite dude on 2k10…

  • Red

    Derrick Rose is way better, wack article.

  • http://slamonline.com moneymellz

    @unrel yea he is monter on 2k10..but not more den drose.

    Westbrook is headed for good things tho

  • moneymike

    PLEASE POST A DESKTOP/WALLPAPER OF THIS!!!

    please you guys need to release more wallpapers cause you guys got some sick pics.

  • George

    Teenage Mutant NInja Turtle lookin’ ass… awesome player though

  • http://slamonline.com The Black Rick Kamla

    Honestly he’s got the potential to be better than Derrick Rose. With Rose we’re always so blown away by his explosiveness…Russell is darn near just as explosive and he’s got an extremely reliable yet improving stroke from the arc and in. Not just that the man is fearless. OKC = FUTURE OF BASKETBALL

  • ANTS

    love everything about okc, except their jersey..damn,those are ugly…new uniform and logo ,please

  • Benjamin Gordesky

    Russell has the potential to become one of the top five point guards ever to play the game by the end of his career.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Ryne Nelson

    @moneymike: We got you. Friday…

  • JTaylor21

    @BlackRickKamla, you sound just as dumb as the real rick kamla. Westbrook can be better than rose, whaaaaaaaaaaat? Rose jumpshot is leap years better than westbrooks, he’s faster, quicker, stronger, bigger, jumps higher, finishes better, do you want me to keep going? I love westbrook’s game but saying that he is or can be better than rose is straight bull.

  • Robb

    Russell’s very good but saying he can be better than Rose is pure fantasy.

  • moneymike

    @Ryne Nelson: NICE, thanks a lot. you guys should update the Wallpapers more often man. they dont have any good NBA ones on the net so i need some new stuff for my computer. GOOD LOOKS!

  • Ali

    Representing LBC and LA LA Land baby…Hope he continues to work on his game! Don’t settle, never be satiisfied with your output, continute to drive yourself…skys the limit.

  • Mike

    @Robb
    It’s people like you who put that “Why not?” bracelet on his wrist.

    If Westbrook keeps improving, he could challenge for a spot on the All-Star team next year, in a Western Conference literally stacked with godly PGs.

    @JTaylor
    To say that there’s no way that Westbrook can be better than Rose is stupid. If Westbrook’s midrange game is indication, he can find his trey. And if he does, players won’t be able to guard him at the charity stripe. And when that happens, watch out. If you thought Westbrook was a fantastic slashing and penetrating guard (and if you don’t, you’re wrong), wait until opponents have to respect his shot.

    It’s almost unfair to the rest of the NBA.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    westbrook does have the potential to be better than drose tho i believe they will have similiar careers.. if westbrook was the main man on his team as drose is on the bulls then his numbers would be much higher and he would get much more respect.. but he is still a monster and yes he does posess the potential to be one the top 5 point guards of all time (same with drose) if he continues to evolve as he has the last couple of years

  • Sparker

    the man love for d rose continues. will he actually do anything to deserve it other than the occasional highlight? stay tuned…

  • Austin

    Where does the insane amount of love for D-Rose come from? Yeah, he’s a very good player, but some people act like hes the freaking second coming.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    DRose and Westbrook are really close as players.
    Rose is more crafty with his handle and general point guard ability, but Westbrook is way better as a defender and rebounder. And I like Westbrook’s nasty streak.
    They should be a good matchup and argument for years to come.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^allenp..
    and i cant wait

  • Fat Lever

    Ants, I bet the Sonics jersey would look better than that OKC stuff. Just sayin…

  • Clutch23

    Westbrook is good but no way he is ever a western all star guard

  • http://slamonline.com moneymellz

    @clutch23 maybe not now..but in a couple years when the old point guards in the west start slowin down..he will gettin betta n betta

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^Clutch23..
    man why would you make such an ignorant statement

  • http://www.springbored.net letsmotor

    is it just me, or does he look like more of a dinosaur than chris bosh in that picture?

  • David Emmanuelle Castillo

    Man wats up wit all this Derrick Rose loving tip……think you guys need to get his dickd out yo mouth. Y’all must be Bulls fans or fans of SportCenter. Lol. I will be real with you though, Rose does have the slight advantage over Westbrook, but to put him on some pedestal as being way better, come on now, get real.

  • moneymike

    WHERES THE WESTBROOK WALLPAPER!?!?!?????

  • lazaruz

    hasnt he already broken out???

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^david emmanuelle castillo..
    man there is no place on this site for talking filth like that.. hundreds of kids get on this site daily man so clean it up

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^lazaruz..
    he has just begun bro

  • chris

    looks like a monstar

  • http://nbacheapseats.blogspot.com Chendaddy

    1. Those OKC uniforms ARE hideous. Worst in the league. Especially the blue ones. 2. Does anyone else wonder if Jeff Green getting cut from Team USA and not getting an extension from OKC will affect that “Big 3″ chemistry there? 3. Westbrook vs. Derrick Rose won’t be a battle of who gets that reliable jump shot first; it’ll be which team will be better for the next 10 years. That will be the PG we’ll see the most, and he’ll automatically be elevated to a higher status because of it.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^chendaddy..
    man i have been thinkin bout the jeff green situation for a long time.. i cant see how he is going to stay honestly and its a shame because i love his game.. n dude u should comment more on this site.. your one of the handful of ppl on here who talk level headed and actually make sence.. i respect u for the basketball knowledge u have shared.. share it more often bro.. completely agree with everything u said

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^chris..
    this is only the beginning for him too man

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^AllenP..
    words of truth… words of truth..

  • Bball fan

    Russell westbrook and Derrick rose are the future at the pg position . I think there is a little rivalry between the two .they both are real good friends , they actually work out with each other every summer so you can imagine how intense the one-on-one battles are . I’m pretty sure Russell outplayed rose this year when he posted 29 pts 7rbs 8ast to roses 19pts 3rbs 7ast in a win over the bulls and he also did very well aginst rose in the final 4 game at ucla . None the less both are incredibly talented and there only going to get better .

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^Bball fan..
    absolutely right bro

  • http://thetroyblog.com Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Allenp: What makes you say Rose is better at all-around point guard ability? Westbrook is a fantastic passer, I’d say better than Rose.
    Co-sign Bball fan.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^teddy-the-bear..
    yes westbrook is a better passer, rebounder, and defender whereas rose is a better scorer.. i honestly believe that if westbrook was in roses situation and was not the number 2 option on his team he would put up better numbers than rose

  • http://slamonline.com moneymellz

    @c_cantrell I have to disagree wit u..if westbrook was a no.1 option I think he would falter a bit..he benefits from havin a kd on his team because teams are more inclined to let westbrook beat dem den kd..if rose had kd his assist would be higher and his scorin imo

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Westbrook is not a better passer, that’s bogus. Rose has way more feel for the game, and is a better scorer in half court set. They are about even in the open court.
    Rose’s handle is better, how he runs his team is better.
    Westbrook is abetter defender, rebounder and he has a great nasty streak, but as a fully developed point guard, Rose is ahead of him. But, Westbrook’s only been playing the point for two years really.

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^Allenp..
    explain to me how rose is a better passer than westbrook.. i agree with everything else you said

  • http://google c_cantrell

    ^Allenp..
    i have been several days for your explanation bro… so c’mon let me have it

  • Matt

    Nickname has to be “Russell Athletic”

  • TheTruth

    Westbrook is better than ROSE from a Point guard perspective

    Rose is more of a score first point guard while Westbrook is more of in the middle and i think he has better vision than Rose but thats arguable.

    Westbrook also seems to have the intangibles that alot of players dont have and Westbrook’s mid range game is bound to improve.

    D-rose said he’d been workin on his stroke, but he shot about 20% percent from 3Pt% and 40% FG’s.

    Russell is just as explosive, a better defender now.

    Also MAD people are hyping up Thunder. They’re a good team, but Last year they got lucky they matched up with Lakers. Lakers have trouble with athletic teams and thunder is about athletic as they get.

    I agree they will be dangerous in time, but they’re not there yet.

    Neither is Kevin DUrant. All these GM’s are hyping him up, just because he signed his contract early, doesn’t care or want to market himself, just all dumb moves from a finacial sense.

    NO WONDER ALL THESE GM voted him most likely to win the MVP award.

    Last year in the playoff showed KD’s weakness against hte lakers. He had a bad driving game and needed to improve his ball handling.

    Dont fool yourself In REALLIFE Lebron is better thn KD and so is Kobe.

  • http://n/a Big Q

    Russell(the Jedi) Westbrook is definitely on the elite level as far as point gaurds. Hands down he is the most explosive and athletic. He is still learning the point position but he is super talented.

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