The former MVP was ruled out for Wednesday’s game with a right quad strain that has sidelined him since Aug. 11. The injury dates all the way back to Aug. 4, when he started feeling soreness in a game against the Portland Trail Blazers.
Westbrook had been previously reported to be nearing a return and running and shooting in Rockets practice, however, his return is up to the team’s medical staff.
D'Antoni said the decision on Westbrook's return is entirely the medical staff's. "It's close. They'll make a good call and he'll do the same." https://t.co/NACRIYSc2k— Jonathan Feigen (@Jonathan_Feigen) August 25, 2020
With Westbrook out, the Rockets have been forced to make do against the team that sent him to Houston in last summer’s blockbuster trade. Led by former Rocket Chris Paul, the Oklahoma City Thunder evened the series at 2-2 on Monday despite James Harden’s 32 points and 15 assists.
Westbrook’s presence was felt in Monday’s game though, as he was seen jawing with his former teammates during the game while wearing a Kobe Bryant jersey.
Whether the Rockets are up or down 3-2 after Wednesday, Westbrook’s potential return will be a massive storyline entering Game 6. In his first season with the Rockets, Westbrook has averaged 27.2 points per game — his highest mark since his MVP year in 2016-17 — with 7.9 rebounds and 7.0 assists per game.
More from Yahoo Sports: