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Russell Westbrook Gives His Side of Wednesday’s Viral Videos

While the Lakers dropped their fourth game in NBA preseason action Wednesday in a 118–113 loss to the Timberwolves, a great deal of attention was centered around veteran point guard Russell Westbrook and the chemistry being built between him and his teammates.

Several videos of Westbrook surfaced social media that showed the Lakers’ star not standing next to his teammates in a pregame huddle before the start of the game as well as appearing to ignore Lakers newcomer Patrick Beverley when he called for a huddle on a defensive possession in the third quarter. Beverley managed to get LeBron James, Anthony Davis and Lonnie Walker IV in the huddle but not Westbrook.

When asked about the pregame situation—in which Westbrook was wiping his face with a towel before walking on the court to be with his teammates—the nine-time All-Star equated the moment as one he had been doing “in the league for years.”

“I think they just cut the video. Obviously, the Internet is going to take it and run with whatever they need to run with,” Westbrook told reporters. “I’ve been doing the same ritual since I been in the league. I’m pretty sure you guys [reporters] can attest to that.”

While it is no secret that Beverley and Westbrook have not had the best relationship prior to them becoming teammates this season, Westbrook told reporters that his relationships with Beverley is “great.” “I sit on the plane, he’s right next to me,” Westbrook said. “We get on the road, we hang out together.”

When Westbrook was asked about what appeared to be him shunning Beverley’s huddle request, he said he was talking to coaches about a missed coverage and that half of the video had been cut.

“I don’t pay no mind to it,” Westbrook said. “I’m just trying to compete and do my job. Everything, videos, you can cut any video, make anything you want out of it. It’s not up to me to be able to judge all of that. I’m a genuine team player. I never had a problem being with my teammates and continue to do what I been doing.”

Westbrook finished Wednesday’s game with five points, three rebounds and four assists. The Lakers begin the 2022 regular season on Oct. 18 against the Warriors. 

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