Thunder In the news: Westbrook focus shifts to Rubio

SALT LAKE CITY, UT - APRIL 21: Ricky Rubio
SALT LAKE CITY, UT - APRIL 21: Ricky Rubio /

The OKC Thunder got their hats handed to them in the Game 3 loss with post game comments shifting to Ricky Rubio.

The OKC Thunder are now operating out of hole to get back in the series following the loss to the  Jazz in Game 3.  The concerning part of the loss is how total and complete it seemed. Sure the Thunder had an eight point lead early. But, if we’re honest the Jazz appeared to be in total control for the majority of the game.

Rudy Gobert has players backing out of the paint and rethinking their shots. The crowd at Vivint Home Arena was rocking and the Jazz were buoyed by their cheers.  Having watched every playoff game the Jazz crowd (at least in this scribes opinion) was by far the loudest of all the home courts.

Seeing former coach Jerry Sloan and former Jazz Hall of Fame guard John Stockton in attendance brought me back to the Stockton and Malone days. Granted Stockton had duo reasons to be in attendance given his son David is part of the Jazz reserve unit. In fact, David got on the court in garbage time for all of one minute.

Rubio delivers veteran-like playoff performance:

In the post game pressers the key topic of conversation featured one – Ricky Rubio and his triple-double evening. Russell Westbrook was clearly embarrassed because he guaranteed he would shut down Rubio in Game 4.

Westbrook’s comments of course led to responses from the Jazz including Jonas Jerebko and head coach Quin Snyder.

What might be a little concerning for Thunder Nation is Westbrook is citing where he can be better, but what about shutting down the numerous other players causing OKC concerns. Hey, until I hear Paul George say he isn’t going to leave Joe Ingles wide open for corner threes or Steven Adams say he’s healthy enough to make a difference guarding Rudy Gobert, I won’t be quite as taken by these proclamations.

Next: Round 1 complete series hub article compilation

Like Jerebko implies, if Russ shuts down Ricky then someone else on the Jazz will step up. The question is — do the OKC Thunder have the same personnel and capability?

I guess we’ll find out tomorrow night.