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Watch Russell Westbrook Get Epic Tribute Video, Ovation in Return vs. Thunder

Paul Kasabian

Houston Rockets point guard Russell Westbrook, who played his first 11 seasons with the Oklahoma City Thunder before a 2019 offseason trade, received a vociferous standing ovation from the fans in Chesapeake Energy Arena upon his return to OKC on Thursday.

The sellout crowd loudly cheered for Westbrook upon the conclusion of a pregame tribute video:

They kept it up when he was officially introduced to the crowd:

Westbrook averaged 23.0 points, 8.4 assists and 7.0 rebounds for the Thunder. He made eight All-Star Games, won two scoring titles and earned the 2016-17 NBA MVP.

He will go down as the top pick in the final draft class of the Seattle SuperSonics, who became the Oklahoma City Thunder beginning in the 2008-09 season. The Sonics took Westbrook fourth overall in 2008.

The point guard then teamed with Kevin Durant and led the Thunder to an impressive run of success, which included four Western Conference Finals appearances and one win. OKC made the 2012 NBA Finals, where it lost to LeBron James and the Miami Heat in five games.

That team also featured James Harden, who is currently the NBA's scoring leader. The 2017-18 NBA MVP now teams up with Westbrook in the Rockets backcourt, which has led Houston to a 25-11 mark.

The Thunder have been impressive despite losing Westbrook. Nine-time All-Star point guard Chris Paul, who went the other way in the Westbrook deal, has guided the Thunder to a 21-16 record and a seventh-place mark in the West. OKC has won six of its past seven games.


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