Russell Westbrook can’t be your No. 1 option for a championship team - Stephen A. | First Take

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  • Published on Apr 22, 2019
  • Stephen A. Smith argues that despite Russell Westbrook’s great talent, he is incapable of leading a team to an NBA Championship as the No. 1 option and will take the blame if the Oklahoma City Thunder get eliminated in the 1st round.
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Comments • 4 319

  • Gordon Collins
    Gordon Collins 23 days ago

    I dunno about you guys, but, mvp year Derrick rose is more athletic than Westbrook was in his MVP season, at least imo.

  • antione english
    antione english 24 days ago

    I mean everything you gusy say is on point.. but again one went to a super star club and the other well ya know.... lol thats not fair so letsnjust keep at 3 1st round exits

  • Eddie Bitar
    Eddie Bitar 24 days ago

    Thunders problem is obvious. A championship team defensively, but only have 2 star players and ONE scorer. Russ has been atrocious shooting the ball, and PG is prone to off nights. Always a recipe for first round exit no matter the talent

  • UeProductionz
    UeProductionz 24 days ago

    I think Will Cain needs to replace Molly as the host. You lose some eye candy but the quality is just so much better. Kinda reminds me of First Take back when it was Skip, Stephen A and Jay Crawford.

  • countryboy
    countryboy 25 days ago

    All of sudden it’s all Westbrook’s fault that KD left now huh. Right Westbrook blew that 3-1 lead, fantastic...

  • countryboy
    countryboy 25 days ago

    Get him a fucking coach that will contain him and not do iso plays down the stretch for 48 minutes.

  • Yobadd Yobadd
    Yobadd Yobadd 25 days ago

    Russell needs to learn how to play team ball. He and the coaches gotta know that they need to change up things to play to win.

  • King
    King 25 days ago

    I’ve been saying this since Harden left OKC Westbrook isn’t someone you want to play with(even though KD put up with him until couple season ago). He looks good stats wise but if you avg triple double for 2 or 3seasons and can’t pass the first round it honestly doesn’t matter

  • stikmoney __84
    stikmoney __84 26 days ago

    How about bad coaching

  • Joshua Makshofi
    Joshua Makshofi 26 days ago +1

    Imagine choosing Westbrook over Harden and/or Durant.

  • Aditya Rao
    Aditya Rao 26 days ago

    I feel like Russ has 2 outfits every postgame, one for when he wins and one for when loses.

  • Captain Obvious
    Captain Obvious 26 days ago

    Lebron: Do you want join me in LA?
    Westbrook: Next question.
    Lebron: I'm not talking to you Westbrick. PG?
    Paul George: Hell yea. Should have went there last year.

  • Kurdt Kobain
    Kurdt Kobain 26 days ago

    Here's what I think about Westbrook, His ego is the problem and why hell never win. His ego makes it to where if a teammate succeeds on the court without him being directly responsible for that success it kills him. If someone is able to create their own shot and don't need a set up from RW he goes crazy, and that's when he starts playing with no bball IQ. If someone on the other team goes down and pulls up from three and nails it RW for some reason will bring the ball up court ,doesn't survey the court, doesn't run a play, dosent call for a pick, nothing he just wants to match the 3pter so he Jack's up a contested shot from 35ft away. Even if it's his own teammate that catches fire and is killing it instead of feeding them the ball untill they cool off or the defense does something to slow them down Russ feels the need to show his worth and starts forcing his own number, jacking up 3s, dribbles the ball way to long wirh out a pass, he will drive uncontrollably to the rim with 2shot blockers near and if he does actually give the ball up at that moment it's usally s forced pass that results in a turnover, it's just selfish selfish basketball and all because he can't stand not being the guy who is MVP for the team every game. He hates having to have a teammate to run with him that can actually help him win, he wants to win but only if he is the one winning. There can be no doubt that he is the reason they won. If they lose well he has his stats padded like a insane asylums walls, that way he can look at his numbers and his ego is ok because it wasn't his fault they lost. He had a triple double with bunch of points assist rebounds he even had 4 steals, but he shot 7-32, had 12 turnovers, lapses on defense on a Few plays and got a technical foul giving up more free points.. tis is just what I get from RW and why I don't really care for him and don't think he's ever gonna get a chip, hell he will be lucky to make the conference finals again... Once again JMO

  • Antwon Dorsett 980i9
    Antwon Dorsett 980i9 26 days ago

    Best playoffs in a while every match up is crazy

  • Kurdt Kobain
    Kurdt Kobain 26 days ago

    Good luck getting Westbrook to be anything other than the 1st option. Westbrook wants to be option 1 and option 1b, maybe every few games PG can be the 2nd option but he better score all his points while Russ is on the bench

  • D-G
    D-G 26 days ago

    In reality, Westbrook cant even be a 2nd option. He needs to be more like a 3rd. He's bad help. Look at past playoff series when KD was there. Westbrook was trash. This year is nothing new. Hes also why you can't totally blame KD for losing like he did in OKC. Superstars can't win alone and Westbrook sure aint that guy to help.

  • James George
    James George 26 days ago

    Its the reason why KD left..Westbrook wants to be the guy..and KD doesnt like that, coz he knew hes capable of in clutch time..

  • Alberto L
    Alberto L 26 days ago +1

    Max Kellerman is always stating the obvious. If Westbrook hits shots? No shit sherlock.

  • Danilo Painter
    Danilo Painter 26 days ago

    Russell "First Round Exit" Westbrook. And along so is Paul "First Round Exit" George. LMAO!!! It will be the narrative for Paul George till his contract expires. Then Paul will want to sign with the Lakers. NAH! No thanks, George. Stay with Russ.

  • Marc V
    Marc V 26 days ago

    I feel bad for Russ

  • Dre Wright
    Dre Wright 26 days ago

    If Russle Westbrook didn't have a bad attitude and being so stuck up he probably would've past the first round. I wonder how his teammates think of him as a leader.

  • Andrew Palmer
    Andrew Palmer 26 days ago

    Did yall watch the game they ledt him open abd just hedged the paint... Russ for all your fans listen to coaching man theyre leaving you open man and youre still not hitting be a point guard and think

  • Ennis Cool
    Ennis Cool 26 days ago

    A player with low EQ like Westbrook will never lead a team to championship. All champ team leaders, ig MJ, Kobe, Duncan, LeBron and Curry, all very humbled, sophisticated and mature guys. Westbrook is a joke.

  • Martin Da GOAT
    Martin Da GOAT 26 days ago

    I love this new mediator

  • Endule
    Endule 26 days ago

    And this is why Steph Curry > Westbrook

  • Tehui1974
    Tehui1974 26 days ago

    The problem with Westbrook is that when he misses, he just keeps on shooting. Pass the f* ball.

  • Peter Pitaluga
    Peter Pitaluga 26 days ago

    Russell Westbrook suck saw his attitude w.a.s.p

  • Anandhu R Krishnan
    Anandhu R Krishnan 26 days ago

    with russ okc nvr gonna lay banner

  • Ivan Dizon
    Ivan Dizon 26 days ago

    Westbrook need 2 new young players on his side in caliber of jason kidd and shaq o neal.

  • Tim Warren
    Tim Warren 26 days ago

    OKC made a HUGE mistake when they decided to give Westbrook that contract!! He’s definitely over paid for his play, and will never get OKC any championships... NEXT QUESTION

  • Mang ng
    Mang ng 26 days ago

    westbrook trying to prove he's a better than Dame, Dame tryna win games.

  • LoneWolfAlpha
    LoneWolfAlpha 26 days ago

    11/31 Westbrick sucks ass

  • Jeremy Thompson
    Jeremy Thompson 26 days ago

    Thank god that molly skank isn’t on

  • Game Boy
    Game Boy 26 days ago

    Russell Westbrook is one of the best to ever do it a lot of great player don't have a championship ring to their name FUCK a ring GREAT TEAM PLAY WIN RINGS Legacy to me is the players own individual stats

  • xFlow777
    xFlow777 26 days ago

    Westbrook sucks ass, it's time to look the truth in the eye

  • Andrew Torrenzi
    Andrew Torrenzi 26 days ago

    Releasing Billy Donovan can help too just saying

  • Jonathan Monami
    Jonathan Monami 26 days ago +1

    MAX: You can't say Russell Westbrook shoulders all the blame when Paul George's shoulders have resulted into him not hitting shots
    Me: LMAO

  • Dennis Rodriguez
    Dennis Rodriguez 26 days ago

    Westbrook choked like a mother fucker

  • Abhimanyu Yadav
    Abhimanyu Yadav 26 days ago

    00:13 how quickly they forget Drose!

  • TheManFromSaipan
    TheManFromSaipan 26 days ago

    Hey at least Molly isn't in this segment

  • Zeafer Jones
    Zeafer Jones 26 days ago

    Other than Westbrook I believe the reason why OKC struggles is that they don't play Ferguson nearly enough.

  • Landon Wherry
    Landon Wherry 26 days ago

    Will is so much better than Molly

  • spongeaang98
    spongeaang98 26 days ago

    I made the mistake of considering Russell Westbrook an elite level player two years ago. I will never make that mistake again. I'm done with him. Elite level players don't just play well, they make everyone else play well for themselves, not just one person. Elite level players also will do what is needed to win, deferring to others if he doesn't have it rather than play hero ball to do it all himself. Westbrook doesn't do either of those things, and he seems incapable or uninterested in changing up his playstyle. The Thunder have surrounded him with three MVP caliber players and he's done NOTHING with them. He's clearly dragging down the team and he won't be elite until he fixes any of this.

  • Kha'len McCoy
    Kha'len McCoy 26 days ago

    Paul George said they can come back from a 3-1 lead
    😂😂

  • Connor Hine
    Connor Hine 26 days ago

    If the Thunder traded Westbrook what do you think they could get?

  • TUBESTEAKNIG
    TUBESTEAKNIG 26 days ago +1

    He can't even be #2. Honestly, #3 either. He can be 2 or 3 on an elite team possibly, but they won't win when it comes down to it.

  • SpartanK07
    SpartanK07 26 days ago

    Thunder need to feature Adams ! Dude should be 20-20 each game

  • SpartanK07
    SpartanK07 26 days ago

    Africa isn't a country

  • Todd Sands
    Todd Sands 26 days ago

    We might as well talk about this now. OKC is going down.

  • hello hello
    hello hello 26 days ago

    Westbrook's all over trending right now

  • Meme Meme
    Meme Meme 26 days ago

    Y’all all haters

  • Isaiah Patterson
    Isaiah Patterson 26 days ago

    Max stfu. Ohh if harden hits shots the rockets will go undefeated if westbrook hits shots he would be the best player in the league. Stop with that shit. They are both mvps they both need to step up when it matters

  • Jamal Husbands
    Jamal Husbands 26 days ago

    Westbrook need to play shooting gaurd.

  • gor9027
    gor9027 26 days ago

    Winning that MVP was the worst thing to happen to Westbrook professionally. It validated his stat stuffing, reckless style of play, and poor decision making and he continues to play this way and thus the Thunder keep getting severely exposed in the playoffs.

  • Bubbles
    Bubbles 26 days ago

    as much as i dont like Will Cain, i must say, he is really damn good at moderating. Enjoyable to watch tbh

  • def miaden
    def miaden 26 days ago

    He's a joke

  • Cow Crow
    Cow Crow 27 days ago

    Westbrook has too big an ego. Durant was drowning in its shadow.

  • Jaylin Dansby
    Jaylin Dansby 27 days ago +3

    Billy Donovan : Can I coach now ?

    Westbrook : Next Question

  • Eli Savala
    Eli Savala 27 days ago

    Billy Donavan needs a lot more blame he is an idiot

  • 150 Roc Block
    150 Roc Block 27 days ago

    All facts, salty fans will disagree but Russ isn’t a go to player 🤷🏽‍♂️

  • JustGoodNetwork
    JustGoodNetwork 27 days ago

    why do yall keep hating on westbrook most players dont have a ring

    • Ghost777
      Ghost777 25 days ago

      JustGoodNetwork it’s not just one bad series second time 1st round exit ...you cared to ask why people are hating on Westbrook so I gave you a an answer you knob head .

    • JustGoodNetwork
      JustGoodNetwork 25 days ago

      +Ghost777 who cared one bad series

    • Ghost777
      Ghost777 26 days ago +2

      JustGoodNetwork did u see the way he was shooting ? 11/31 another 1st ROUND EXIT he can’t even get pass the first hurdle .

  • snunja hockey
    snunja hockey 27 days ago

    Westbrook has zero basketball IQ...that's why he will never win. He can rack up triple doubles...but his dumbass cant spell triple or double.

  • Doynavon Keith
    Doynavon Keith 27 days ago

    I’ve been saying this forever and people just think I’m hating on Russ.

  • King T
    King T 27 days ago

    Yo his team is ass all they got is PG man

  • TINKYSTEELE
    TINKYSTEELE 27 days ago

    I really don’t think he can play another way, he’s gonna hog the ball get stats and then be like “we lost” I love him as a player just wish he could learn to play with his WHOLE team

  • Storm
    Storm 27 days ago

    Oklahoma needs to think about trading Westbrook. I know people may say but he averages triple doubles but he sucks at scoring and even if he’s open he’ll brick it. That mvp they gave him was out of feeling sorry for him.

  • Samuel Steinman-Friedman

    What is it with Max and saying if only superstar X makes shots that team can win. Seriously that needs to be filed under the "duh category." Huh who would have known if a team (and player) plays well, then they can win. Honestly, how does he keep getting away with saying the most obvious things.

  • JDwJC11
    JDwJC11 27 days ago

    I don't blame Paul George for his "next question" answer. He didn't want to open up a can of worms addressing the end of the game dunk. Obviously, he dunked out of excitement. I don't like people suggesting that his response was due to Westbrook's influence. I'm not a Thunder fan btw.... just an objective take.

  • Br0DiE.SzN.
    Br0DiE.SzN. 27 days ago

    Russ is my favorite player but he needs to stop shooting man

  • Fan Person
    Fan Person 27 days ago

    And I thought KD was a snake. He was just tryna get out before it was too late

  • Fan Person
    Fan Person 27 days ago

    Westbrook isn’t bad... it’s just the thunder won’t win a championship with him as their point guard let alone reach the second round

  • John Sim
    John Sim 27 days ago

    Thats why basketball iq and shooting ability is more important than pure athletisism. Guys like Nash, Curry, Kid, Stockon prove it.

  • jb
    jb 27 days ago

    For starters, Paul George HAS EVOLVED into the #1 scoring option on the team. U gotta give Russ PROPS for taking the foot off the gas a bit scoring wise. And let PG evolve into that. So OKC has two alpha dog caliber scoring options now in PG and Russ.
    From there with the evolution of PG's game, u could MAKE THE CASE PG is the best player on OKC. Once he upped the ante scoring, u can make that case. So OKC has two of the top 10 players in the world on that squad.

    So AS OF NOW, Russ isn't the #1 scoring option. ARGUABLY isn't the best player on the team anymore. So the MAIN QUESTION is can OKC win with Russ as the PRIMARY FACILIATATOR!!! Maybe u need a big PG who can defend SG's and let Russ slide to the SG spot. Or u need a point forward type to be the primary facilitator. Larry Brown moved AI to SG back in the day BECAUSE what he did best was scoring the rock. And had Eric Snow run the PG. Maybe its time OKC looks into that.

  • Luis Cortes
    Luis Cortes 27 days ago

    Ik Westbrook is shooting bad and all but how are we not realizing that Portland honestly has a shot of taking the title they have been playing amazing

  • anonymous _
    anonymous _ 27 days ago +1

    Fuck you nigga.

  • Mlr
    Mlr 27 days ago

    3:46 He banged a teammates wife

  • Kez
    Kez 27 days ago

    They should of started Schroder with Westcook

  • SinCityMadman
    SinCityMadman 27 days ago

    Westbrook is great during the season, then just ok when it really matters...then he pouts like a 👶 when he loses. #ChokeArtist

  • Philemon Holson
    Philemon Holson 27 days ago

    He needs to call Curry to ask him what his secret to keep everybody so involve and happy.

  • 04
    04 27 days ago

    Russell Westbrook is the most criticized player in nba history. NOT Lebron

  • Andrew Young
    Andrew Young 27 days ago

    I mean awesome

  • Greg Horton
    Greg Horton 27 days ago

    Get to the paint OKC, start utilizing Steven!!! Steven Steven Steven please. Stop settling for jump shots!!!

  • Greg Horton
    Greg Horton 27 days ago

    What happened to that beautiful pick and roll with Adams!?!? What in the fuck is going on with OKC and what’s up with PG??? Playoff P is garbage, he was garbage last year against Utah too!!! SMH, come on OKC!!! LEGOOOO!!!

  • Sebastian McGriff
    Sebastian McGriff 27 days ago

    This a team problem. Westbrook is not surrounded by enough defense or shooters. He takes off balance and poorly selected jumpers which is a big area for improvement. People who don’t know basketball will say he has low basketball IQ. They also have never averaged 10+ assists in the NBA.

  • Dylan Vela
    Dylan Vela 27 days ago

    I don’t even feel like it’s just Westbrook needing to hit shots they just need more shooters in general

  • michael manakis
    michael manakis 27 days ago

    Horrible roster and no team chem. When LeBron Harden Kryie and so on don't win its the talent around them not good enough but Russ with less and it's his fault huh ?

  • Tc Grant
    Tc Grant 27 days ago

    All those triple doubles dont lead to that much success

  • Cole S
    Cole S 27 days ago

    Westbrook isn’t the highest jumping point guard ever, nor the fastest. What makes him the most athletic one? His mouth?

  • 1984Akeem
    1984Akeem 27 days ago

    Love how Will Cain conducts the show...

  • El de la Barba
    El de la Barba 27 days ago

    Fucking cancer!!

  • Chase Musgrow
    Chase Musgrow 27 days ago

    Paul george is hurt how is that Westbrooks fualt. I dont like how they blamed carmelo anthony last year so they deserve to lose.

  • Raj Singh
    Raj Singh 27 days ago

    Westbrick is all about stats since day one

  • DaBoyJosh
    DaBoyJosh 27 days ago

    Westbrook just another melo

  • Kid Corey
    Kid Corey 27 days ago

    I think it's fair to say Russ really needed KD. Remember the 2014-15 season when KD missed about 50+ games with the foot injury, and Russ was the main guy on that team, they missed the playoffs. Now with KD gone permanently, they'll be sent packing in the 1st round every year since his departure

  • Wookz Wts
    Wookz Wts 27 days ago

    Its not all westbrooks fault he not the only person who tryed to shoot the ball

  • bigwilly43729
    bigwilly43729 27 days ago

    He's going to have to change his game & be a more consistent shooter, especially as his athleticism wanes. The fiery competitor stuff is fine, but the pissing matches with opposing point guards often takes him to a place where he forgets about everyone else. The shooting percentage thing is a bit overrated since he takes a lot of contested shots at the rim (good thing).

    Thunder also need to find a couple of actual shooters this off season as well. They have too many iso players. Dream player would be Tobias Harris, but I doubt they can afford him. Nikola Mirotic or JJ Reddick would probably be better options to target.

  • Terrance Brown
    Terrance Brown 27 days ago

    OKC needs a strong point guard and put RW at the shooting guard...problem solved.

  • Brandon Johnson
    Brandon Johnson 27 days ago

    It’s unfair to say Westbrook or George shoulder the load. Their offense all season has come from their defense mainly. They were never a great offensive team as a unit but that defense was elite. Teams picked up on it, adjusted, don’t turn over the ball and now the Thunder are in trouble. Should they learn to lean on efficiency over volume, this is a championship team. Westbrook is not efficient. Durant learned how to find his best shots and maximize his statistical impact in his scoring. I thought Westbrook would have picked up on it but is still having shooting struggles. I really like this team and what they’re able to do in the West. They need to take shots away from Westbrook or design a system where he doesn’t have to create from scratch all the time.

  • Too Cool
    Too Cool 27 days ago

    Wow so much hate on westbrook one of thee best n da game

  • mikyle parks
    mikyle parks 27 days ago

    1. Move Russ to the 2
    2. Get at least 2 players that shoot no less than 38% from the field
    3. Upgrade the bench
    It could all be so simple