Russell Westbrook wasn’t “expecting shit” from Melbourne United and on Sunday he and his new-look Thunder looked like shit for a few quarters as they squeaked by with a one-point victory, 86-85.
Westbrook missed 7 of his 10 shots in 28 minutes of action; Paul George missed 12 of his 17 shots, including 7 of 10 from three; Melo missed 13 of his 19; and the bench only produced 15 of the team’s 86 total points.
Melbourne was led by Casper Ware, who Ballislife fans might remember for his MJ moment in the 2016 Drew League Championship game; he connected on five straight threes during a 27-point third quarter against Nick Young’s Juglife team and was awarded a MVP award to place next to his Finals MVP award from France.
“They did a good job,” Westbrook said after the game, while wearing a t-shirt that had the internet convinced was a shot at Kevin Durant. “They did a good job.”
“Our defense is good. That’s all that matters, man,” Westbrook added. “As long as we defend at a high level, offense is easy. Offense is easy. So we ain’t worried about that.”
I wouldn’t be worried either, even though they were outscored in three of the four quarters and only had a total of 37 points in the second half.
Also worth mentioning is the play of Raymond Felton. The big-boned back-up for Westbrook made 3 of his 4 shots in 11 minutes. This is coming less than a week after he made 4 of 6 against the Rockets. I know it’s preseason and getting too excited or too down about any stat in these games is premature but it’s not that often we get to throw a compliment at Felton.