The 24-year-old Westbrook still has not missed a game in his five-year NBA career.
Was Westbrook close to not playing? “Come on, what do you think?” Brooks said with a smile.
Westbrook was not available for interviews before the game because he was receiving treatment on the ankle. After the game, he refused an interview request. He finished with 11 points, five assists and three rebounds in 24:43 of playing time.
At The Peake last season, the song “This City” was played before pregame introductions.
Thunder coach Maurice Cheeks would bob in rhythm to the song with Kevin Durant standing nearby in unison.
The song was played before Friday's game at Time Warner Cable Arena, and right on cue Cheeks and Durant looked at each other, smiled and picked up with their pregame ritual with Cheeks mouthing the words.
Former Thunder center Byron Mullens, who was traded to Charlotte for a second-round draft pick on Dec, 19, 2011, stopped by the OKC locker room afterward and visited with Durant and others. … Thunder starting center Kendrick Perkins picked up his 11th technical of the season, slamming the ball down after being called for traveling. … The Thunder is now 15-7 overall against Eastern Conference teams, 19-12 on the road, 8-4 against the East on the road, 21-1 when shooting better than 50 percent from the floor and 4-0 when six players score in double-digits. … OKC is now 7-2 all-time against the Bobcats.
Perkins when asked if he minded sitting out another entire fourth quarter along with his fellow starters: “I ain't trippin' on it.”
BY JOHN ROHDE