During the first timeout of Game 5 on Wednesday night, injured Thunder point guard Russell Westbrook was shown on the scoreboard screen at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Sitting in a suite and wearing the same blue T-shirt fans in attendance were provided, the sellout crowd of 18,203 at Chesapeake Energy Arena erupted as Westbrook smiled and waved. Westbrook then waved both arms for more crowd noise, and got it.
Westbrook suffered a torn lateral meniscus in his right knee in the second quarter of Game 2 after colliding with Houston point guard Patrick Beverley while timeout was being called. Westbrook had surgery last Saturday and will miss the remainder of the season.
As expected, Beverley was heavily booed during pregame introductions prior to the Rockets' 107-100 victory.
Beverley also was booed every time he touched the ball, which was frequent given that he's a point guard.
Boos directed at Metta World Peace last year were louder, probably because many fans realize Beverley did not intentionally injure Westbrook, while MWP elbowed James Harden flush across the face and served a seven-game suspension.
Thunder players certainly haven't forgotten what Beverley did, however.
With 5:40 left in the first quarter and Beverley attempting to call timeout, OKC starting point guard Reggie Jackson, the man who replaced Westbrook, slapped at the ball.
A frustrated Beverley threw the ball at Jackson and was slapped with a technical foul.