Thank you, Russell Westbrook; a trip down memory lane

Russell Westbrook of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
Russell Westbrook of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
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Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

Remember that Iron Man streak I talked about earlier? Yeah, this is when it ends.

We always knew Russell Westbrook had a high motor, was highly competitive and is never phased by anything. But now, we finally saw him involved in real, true to form beef with another player. Beef that will last a lifetime, and still resonates to this day. Beef, that sparked the first ever “what if?” in Oklahoma City Thunder history, a question pondered a lot throughout the team’s tenure in OKC.

Russell Westbrook and Patrick Beverly have two polar opposite paths to the NBA. Westbrook was a stud at a college basketball blueblood at UCLA and was selected fourth overall. Patrick Beverly started at Arkansas University, before being ruled academically ineligible. Beverly was forced to head overseas and have a wildly successful pro career in Europe, including a Eurocup MVP.

Beverly got his shot in the NBA in the 2012-13 season, playing 41 games for the Rockets as a goon type player whose only real skill was annoying opponents.

Then, the first round of the 2012-13 playoffs rolled around.

The Rockets snuck into the playoffs as the 8th seed to take on the Oklahoma City Thunder.

Beverly earned his first career NBA start in game two of the series. Westbrook scored 19 points in game one on 46 percent shooting in a Thunder win.

With his Ironman streak still intact, Russell Westbrook started game two and played 37 minutes in said game. He logged 29 points, four assists, and five rebounds.

Oh yeah, Westbrook did most of that damage with a torn meniscus. After an extremely dirty play from Patrick Beverly at the 5-minute mark in the second quarter.

When Russell Westbrook got past the timeline and was ready to call a timeout, Beverly took a dive for the star guards knees in one of the dirtiest plays you will see.

That ended Westbrook’s season, despite him finishing game two, he would not return for the rest of the Thunder’s playoff run.

The Thunder took care of the lowly Rockets in round one, but could not get past the pesky Grizzlies in the second round.

Related Story. Top ten biggest villains in Thunder history. light

Many believe this 60 win incarnation of the Thunder was the best team to hit the floor in Oklahoma City. That if Russell Westbrook had not gotten hurt, the 2012-13 Thunder could’ve brought home the gold ball.

This injury put Westbrook under the knife for three knee surgeries and an injury he still has to get cleaned up to this day.

The beef between Patrick Beverly and Russell Westbrook is still alive and well today, and will continue for the duration of Westbrook’s career.