Associated Press

Report: NBA looking into incident postgame between Patrick Beverley, son of Thunder minority owner

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This could get messy.

Something happened between the Rockets’ Patrick Beverley and a courtside seated fan — who happens to be the son of a minority owner of the Thunder — during Game 3 Friday night, which spilled over to something postgame.

Whatever happened, the league is investigating, interestingly at the Rockets’ request. Ramona Shelburne of ESPN has the details.

In the first half, Beverley got knocked down after attempting a layup and landed at a fan’s feet, identified as Stuart Scaramucci, son of minority Thunder owner Jay Scaramucci. Beverley got up and immediately started to complain about Scaramucci.

He pointed at Scaramucci as referee Scott Foster and several Rockets went to help him up. After the game, Beverley approached Scaramucci, who was sitting behind the basket, and they got into a heated discussion.

Rockets forward Sam Dekker went to pull Beverley away and he left the court as fans yelled at him. A team source told ESPN the Rockets requested the league look into the incident after Beverley informed them of it.

Representatives of both teams and officials of Chesapeake Energy Arena all said they would cooperate with the investigation. The league will look at all video footage of the incident.

Here is a little video of the postgame “discussion,” but it shows nothing much.

Whatever, if anything, comes of this, the Rockets and Beverley need to put it behind them. Beverley struggled going 0-6 from the floor in what was a Thunder win to make the series 2-1. Game 4 is Sunday in OKC.

Russell Westbrook changes conversation in win over Rockets

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The Great Russell Westbrook Debate can shift topics. “Is he clutch enough” is the new “Is he too selfish?”

Westbrook went 3-of-6 on free throws down the stretch, and the Thunder blew a 10-point lead in the final minutes. But James Harden missed a 3-pointer just before the buzzer, allowing Oklahoma City to escape with a 115-113 Game 3 win over the Rockets on Friday.

“I’ve got to make a free throw,” Westbrook grumbled to begin his on-court interview before seemingly realizing stewing was a bad look and expressed pleasure his team trimmed the series deficit to 2-1.

And, yes, Westbrook clearly cares how he looks, no matter what pretenses he puts up.

His cartoonish fourth quarter of Game 2 – shooting 4-for-18 while his teammates shot 3-for-11 – invited deep criticism of his ball-hogging. Westbrook showed a different approach from the jump tonight, making a concerted effort to find his teammates. He had eight assists in the first half and 11 through three quarters.

Even though Westbrook added no assists in the fourth quarter, he kept looking for his teammates – sometimes to a fault. They just didn’t connect.

Houston cut the margin during an excruciating few minutes Westbrook began the final period during the bench. Even as the Rockets went on a late 15-5 to tie it, Westbrook sought floor balance.

His teammates reveled in his faith in them. They made 9-of-18 3-pointers, and Westbrook — who was 5-for-22 from beyond the arc in the first two games — attempted only one. Steven Adams tipped in a Westbrook miss with 35 seconds left to put Oklahoma City up good, though Westbrook’s dicey free-throw shooting kept it tense.

Like every game in this series, it will be seen as a referendum in the already-decided, not-yet-revealed MVP race. The final lines:

  • Westbrook: 32 points on 24 shots and 10-of-14 free throw shooting, 13 rebounds, 11 assists, three steals, five turnovers, W
  • Harden: 44 points 21 shots and 18-of-18 free throw shooting, six rebounds, six assists, seven turnovers, L

Both players will insist the final letter is most important, but Harden can bank on a couple of those Ws from Games 1 and 2. The Thunder still have their back against the wall.

This felt like a team energized by its first home playoff game of the year, though Billy Donovan made some smart adjustments – mainly tightening his rotation, including deactivating second-string point guard Semaj Christon.

The Thunder will go as far as Westbrook takes them, and tonight, that was to their first playoff win without Kevin Durant since moving to Oklahoma City.

Now, it’s Harden’s turn to answer.

Russell Westbrook fined $15,000 for cursing during media interviews

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In Game 2 against the Rockets, Russell Westbrook dropped 51 points, 10 rebounds, and 13 assist — the first 50-point triple-double ever in the playoffs.

The Thunder still lost. After the game, Westbrook didn’t want to talk about his historic night.

That comment cost him $15,000, as the league fined him for “inappropriate language during a postgame media interview.”

I’m sure if Westbrook were asked about the fine, his response would be similar to the one that got him in trouble in the first place.

Also, I’m pretty sure the media members in attendance were not offended. They’ve heard the language before.

Game 3  between the Rockets and Thunder is in Oklahoma City Friday.

Bulls’ Rajon Rondo has fractured thumb, out indefinitely

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Rajon Rondo, after a rough start to the season blending in with the Bulls, accepted his role the second half of the year, grew in importance to the team, and has been crucial to Chicago going up 2-0 on Boston in the first round, setting up a potential 1/8 upset.

Now Rondo is out indefinitely with a broken thumb, the Bulls have announced. Here is the entire press release:

Rajon Rondo injured his right hand in Game 2 at Boston on Tuesday night. Rondo underwent a subsequent exam and x-rays that confirmed a thumb fracture. Surgery is not required for this injury, and he is out indefinitely.

Rondo has averaged 10.2 points and 6.6 assists in the first two games of the playoffs against Boston, running the offense on one end and, more importantly, being a key part of the defense that has stymied the Celtics on the other. Chicago has been +14.5 per 100 possessions with Rondo on the court through the first two games, -5.4 without him (there is other noise in that number, obviously).

Rondo is tough, but it’s obviously unclear when he could return.

This means a lot more Jerian Grant, Michael Carter-Williams, and maybe some Cameron Payne for the Bulls at the point, although in practice it means Jimmy Butler and Dwyane Wade handling the ball. Coach Fred Hoiberg likely will try some no point guard lineups, but the mid-season trade of Taj Gibson (and Doug McDermott) make that much harder.

After two games where the physical Bulls knocked the Celtics around — in Boston — it was challenging to come up with things the Celtics could do differently to change this series around. Chicago has owned the paint and the glass, and their length and physicality has bothered Boston up and down the roster. But this injury changes the dynamics of the series and opens the door to a Boston comeback that seemed nearly impossible 24 hours ago.

John Wall, Bradley Beal did their thing, dropped combined 63 on Atlanta (VIDEO)

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While you were watching Russell Westbrook be brilliant then awful, the Washington Wizards were taking a 2-0 series lead over the Atlanta Hawks a few channels away.

Mostly thanks to Bradley Beal and John Wall. There were certainly other factors, but they adapted to a tightly called game — you got your wish, Paul Millsap — and combined to drop 63 points on 47 shots. That was the most the pair have combined to score in a playoff game. Many of which you can see in the video above.

The series continues Saturday in Atlanta, where it’s not mathematically a must-win game for the Hawks, but it’s a must-win game for the Hawks.