NBA Playbook and Russell Westbrook: Who Was Right, Who Was Wrong

Remember when Russell Westbrook got benched...ok, yes of course you do. It is all anyone wants to talk about, despite the fantastic win in Game Two. Well, Sebastian Pruiti comes back at the naysayer with some hard evidence about what really happened, and his argument is compelling:

The Play That Got Westbrook Benched | NBA Playbook

Check out this video clip of the incident, and prepare to have your assumptions altered:

A few more comments after the jump.

 

  • My most pertinent question is, knowing what we know now, who reacted more hastily? Westbrook or Scott Brooks?
  • We could probably still argue that Westbrook got yanked and deservedly so because of his emotional outburst to his coach, and not the turnover that he committed. Indeed, after the fiery exchange Westbrook was not in a good place to re-enter the game. And since history treated the move kindly, his benching did not hurt the Thunder.
  • We've discussed on numerous occasions the reason why it seems like Westbrook is often in a situation where he has to force shots - it does not seem like the coaching staff has a lot of good "Plan B's" in the offense. In this set, once Thabo Sefolosha ran the wrong pattern, there was no weak-side play for Westbrook to run. Instead all he could do was back out the ball and then attack. He did have James Harden at the top of the circle, but with the clock running down Harden too would have had to force the shot. It is interesting to note that Harden forcing a last second jumper evokes a much different reaction than Westbrook forcing one.
  • One of the traits of the great point guards of past eras as well as this one is the ability to force his offense to get in the right set. In this case, Westbrook couldn't get Sefolosha to do this. I wonder how the scenario will impact Westbrook's relationship with Sefolosha, since he was the one that inadvertently started the firestorm. My guess is, Sefolosha will go all-out for Westbrook the next time he has to run the play.
And since I just watched Good Will Hunting, it's not your fault, Russ.


X
Log In Sign Up

forgot?
Log In Sign Up

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior users will need to choose a permanent username, along with a new password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

I already have a Vox Media account!

Verify Vox Media account

Please login to your Vox Media account. This account will be linked to your previously existing Eater account.

Please choose a new SB Nation username and password

As part of the new SB Nation launch, prior MT authors will need to choose a new username and password.

Your username will be used to login to SB Nation going forward.

Forgot password?

We'll email you a reset link.

If you signed up using a 3rd party account like Facebook or Twitter, please login with it instead.

Forgot password?

Try another email?

Almost done,

By becoming a registered user, you are also agreeing to our Terms and confirming that you have read our Privacy Policy.

Join Welcome to Loud City

You must be a member of Welcome to Loud City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Welcome to Loud City. You should read them.

Join Welcome to Loud City

You must be a member of Welcome to Loud City to participate.

We have our own Community Guidelines at Welcome to Loud City. You should read them.

Spinner.vc97ec6e

Authenticating

Great!

Choose an available username to complete sign up.

In order to provide our users with a better overall experience, we ask for more information from Facebook when using it to login so that we can learn more about our audience and provide you with the best possible experience. We do not store specific user data and the sharing of it is not required to login with Facebook.

tracking_pixel_9347_tracker