Congratulations again to Russell Westbrook who, for the second time this season, has won Player of the Week honors for the Western Conference.
In a week that has been consumed by the super/ridiculous Jeremy Lin, Westbrook's play has quietly gone under the radar despite being the anchor for three big road wins in the past week. Over the course of four games in which the Thunder went 3-1, Westbrook averaged 30 points, 6 rebounds, 5.3 assists, and 2.5 steals. Two of those wins came against division rivals (Utah, Portland) and a third win was possibly the most entertaining offensive basketball we've seen all season, where the Thunder outlasted Monta Ellis and the Golden State Warriors.
One of the cynical sayings about players who get big contract extensions is that they often celebrate their new-found riches by taking the rest of the season off. It is important to note that Westbrook has embodied the exact opposite of that notion. Since the signing of his extension on January 19th, Westbrook has averaged 25.8 ppg (shooting 48% from the floor), 4.8 rebounds, 5.8 assists, and 2.5 steals per game while helping his team go 9-3 (nine road games) over that time.
I was correct before - Westbrook is just getting warmed up.