Ahead of the 2001 NBA Finals, the Lakers had run the table, sweeping the Blazers, Kings and Spurs, beating them down by a combined average of 15 points per game. Shaquille O’Neal and Kobe Bryant were unstoppable and they’d eventually win the title that season. But not before Allen Iverson went into Staples Center and beat the mighty Lake-Show all by his damn self. He scored 48 points and did what no one before him was able to do–make Shaq and Kobe sweat.
From there on out, the legacy of Allen Iverson was cemented. The man played with the desire of an alpha predator who hadn’t eaten lunch. He was already feared throughout the League, but taking a game off the Lakers and outscoring Shaq? Legendary.
Russell Westbrook plays with the same relentlessness that AI had. His all-out style has translated to one of the greatest individual seasons ever. He’s really putting up a triple-double every other game. Russ’ fire has caught the eye of Iverson, who said during a trip to cop sneakers with Complex, that Russ is the most similar to him.
“When it comes to heart, it’s a no-brainer. It’s Westbrook.”
Video courtesy of Complex