Oklahoma City Thunder: Russell Westbrook, Kobe Bryant get chippy

Westbrook said: “He pushed me. ... I don't mind talking, but I don't like nobody putting their hands on me.”
by Darnell Mayberry Published: January 27, 2013
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photo - Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (24) throws a pass and hits Oklahoma City Thunder forward Nick Collison (4) in the mouth during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013. The Lakers won 105-96. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon) ORG XMIT: LAS107
Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (24) throws a pass and hits Oklahoma City Thunder forward Nick Collison (4) in the mouth during the second half of an NBA basketball game in Los Angeles, Sunday, Jan. 27, 2013. The Lakers won 105-96. (AP Photo/Reed Saxon) ORG XMIT: LAS107

The last thing the fiery rivalry between the Thunder and Lakers needed was more gasoline.

It got some anyway Sunday.

Thunder guard Russell Westbrook and Lakers guard Kobe Bryant got into a brief shoving match with 8:05 remaining in the third quarter of L.A.'s 105-96 win at Staples Center. The two exchanged words, and Bryant was hit with a technical foul but both were allowed to remain in the game.

“He pushed me. That's what happened,” Westbrook said of Bryant. “I just got pushed. I don't mind talking, but I don't like nobody putting their hands on me.”

Bryant was not asked about the brief dust-up.

Westbrook, who struggled through a 6-for-22 shooting night, had just missed his 11th shot in 12 attempts and was running back on defense attempting to steal the ball from behind as Bryant attacked the basket. Westbrook was whistled for a foul and appeared to make contact with Bryant's leg. Bryant then pushed Westbrook in the back at the end of the play. Westbrook immediately turned and shoved Bryant right back.

The two were then separated and play resumed.

IBAKA TAKES A HARD FALL

With 1.9 seconds remaining in the first quarter, Thunder forward Serge Ibaka took a hard spill when he bit on a pump fake by Lakers forward Antawn Jamison.

Ibaka was undercut as Jamison attempted a shot while being fouled by Ibaka, and Ibaka landed hard on his right side in front of the Lakers' bench.

After immediately being subbed out of the game, Ibaka retuned with 5:51 left in the second quarter and finished the game.

Ibaka scored 10 points on 5-for-10 shooting with six rebounds and four blocked shots in 35 minutes.


by Darnell Mayberry
OKC Thunder Senior Reporter
Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in...
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