Russell Westbrook can't be OKC's entire system anymore

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In a disappointing and potentially franchise-altering first-round series loss, Russell Westbrook used up 38 percent of Oklahoma City possessions with a shot, drawn foul or turnover -- a larger share than LeBron James accounted for in almost single-handedly dragging Cleveland past nfl jerseys from china Westbrook's usage rate was almost the same as LeBron's in the 2015 Finals, when James carried an injury-riddled misfit crew within two games of the championship.

Facing elimination, with every teammate but the redoubtable Steven Adams bricking away, Westbrook attempted a jaw-dropping 43 shots. He somehow launched 19 triples. He made seven. Utah coaches and players were happy with almost all of them.

There is something wrong with this. Just how wrong it is, why the Thunder still play this way, and what it means for their uncertain future are matters of debate.

In November 2014, when both Westbrook and Kevin Durant were out with injuries, Scott Brooks implemented something of a motion offense. Nothing fancy: enter the ball to the elbow, cut and screen for each other, move it side-to-side.50

For those Thunder, it was revolutionary. Sitting in the Barclays Center after a shootaround, Andre Roberson talked with something approaching wonder about getting to do things with the ball. It was fun! "Not just a little fun," Roberson told me then. "Sharing the ball, playing for each other -- I'm loving it."

No one expected the Thunder to play that way when Westbrook and Durant returned.authentic nfl jerseys That would have been stupid. Stars are stars because they hoard the ball, draw defenders, and set up lesser teammates with easier shots than those teammates could generate on their own. The Thunder had two superstars who could get anywhere they wanted. Embracing a Spursy egalitarian style would have been doctrinaire and self-defeating.

But the Thunder did want Westbrook and Durant to watch and realize they could let go a little -- that the offense would be less predictable in the postseason if they sacrificed some time of possession and moved around a bit. "Every team can take something from what [the Spurs] do," Nick Collison told me then. "We've seen that in the playoffs, we have to move the ball more and rely less on one-on-one."

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