The atmosphere surrunding the Oklahoma City Thunder practice facility matched that of a playoff series.
Dozens of media members decended upon Russell Westbrook and Steven Adams, hours before the most hyped game in Oklahoma City since July 4th, 2016.
Westbrook was in a particlarly cheerful mood, and very open. He smiled and welcomed the barrage of questions on the Golden State Warriors.
“They are a good transistion team, they shoot a lot of threes,” Westbook said as he was explaining the keys to stopping the Warriors. “We gotta be ready in that aspect and be ready to play.”
Of course, the cause for the media circus is the return of Kevin Durant. Other than stating that for eight years as teammates, Durant meant a lot for the city, Westbrook, of course, was short in his answers regarding his former teammate.
“Be physical,” Westbrook said when asked about defending Durant.
Westbrook did reveal if a teammate leaving has hurt him.
“Hurt? I mean I’m fine. Move forward. Things happen in life and as a man you’ve got to move forward. I have a great group of guys here that I love like my brothers. There have been many teammates come and go that I talk to and don’t talk too — not just Kevin (Durant).”
Steven Adams offered no revelations into his thoughts on how he expects the Oklahoma City crowd to react to Durant’s return.
“I really don’t know, we will see what happens.”
When asked if he has talked to Durat since his departure, Adams replied in a most Kiwi way.
“No, he’s not on my team.”
Even Zaza Pachulia, the newest addition to the Westbrook hit-list, didn’t raise any emotion when ESPN’s Royce Young asked if he was upset he wasn’t playing tonight.
“I don’t care,” Westbrook replied.
With Pachulia out, the Thunder have a huge advantage down low, which Westbrook and Steven Adams expounded upon.
“We can use our size, attack the paint,” Westbrook shared.
“We are going to try and stick our system,” Adams said when asked about the loss of Pachulia. “We’re not going to try and over do something.”
As the emotions swirl around the metro in preperation for tonight’s game, Westbrook couldn’t recall a time growing up as a Lakers fan where his heart was broken.
“Heart broken? Maybe my dad more so than me,” Westbrook shared. “I was more worried about school honestly.”
The Thunder will look to take advantage of the Warriors — who will be on the second night of a back to back and continue the good trends from Thursday night’s win against the Cavaliers.
Stay here with Thunder Digest all day for coverage of tonight’s game against the Golden State Warriors.