By: Shayden Smith
The most anticipated matchup this season. Two former teammates going head to head for the first time since a dramatic breakup. Russell Westbrook versus Kevin Durant. Was this the neck and neck game all NBA fans have been waiting for? Not exactly.
Westbrook and the OKC Thunder started off looking good, taking a 10 point lead late in the first quarter. With a few quick buckets and some wide open shots, Thunder fans had a small dose of hope, but that hope did not last long. The Golden State Warriors started doing what they do best, hitting threes.
The Warriors had too much firepower, including a former thunder buddy himself. Durant exploded with 39 points, hitting seven shots from deep. Watching Durant hit two transition threes in a row brought back flashes of greatness for all Thunder fans. It is not as fun to watch being on the other side of it. This being said the Warriors looked unstoppable from then on.
Westbrook arrived at the game wearing an orange vest the read “Official Photographer.” This clearly being a shot at Durant, Westbrook was showing to everyone around the world that he was ready for this battle.
Westbrook started the game looking confident and under control. Looking to pass the ball and make smart shots, Westbrook was proving he could lead this team all by himself. Then Oklahoma’s favorite athlete started doing what he tends to do in big situations, losing control. Westbrook started making bad passes and was having troubling finishing at the rim. He began to shoot crazy threes that would either be pure as can be, or not hit anything at all.
Westbrook finished with 20 points, 10 assists, and six boards. These are great stats on paper, but with six turnovers and shooting only four of 15 from the field, it was definitely a struggle for Westbrook.
Needless to say, Westbrook and the Thunder had a rough night, losing to the Warriors 96 – 122. Durant was victorious in game one of this new and exciting Westbrook versus Durant rivalry, but Westbrook is now even more fired up and still has something to prove. I think Westbrook is going to come out a whole different player in their second meeting in January. Be ready Warriors, the Thunder are not finished yet.
Could the second meeting be even crazier? Will a few players get ejected from the game? Will Enes Kanter and Durant get into a fist fight? We can only hope.