Sportress of Blogitude

Russell Westbrook appreciates Kobe Bryant coming to his defense

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Kobe Bryant recently took took to social media to defend Russell Westbrook against criticism over the high volume of shots he has been taking of late as the point guard attempts to carry the Oklahoma City Thunder on his back into the postseason.

And for that, Westbrook recently expressed great appreciation for the Los Angeles Lakers superstar for coming to his defense.

“That’s my guy. That’s my guy. That’s my guy,” Westbrook said, via a tweet from ESPN’s Royce Young. “Kobe’s a good friend of mine and being in L.A. I was able to watch him and see him become a Hall of Famer and one of the best players to play the game. It’s an honor to be able to see somebody like that, to be able to have your back and support you.”

In a series of tweets on Monday, Bryant chided any critics who have taken issue with how Westbrook, practically single-handedly, might punch the Thunder’s postseason ticket. He added that all NBA greats are subjected to criticism before they secured their first ring, even injecting some sarcastic humor via a Liz Lemon meme.

Bryant returned to Twitter on Tuesday to expand upon his criticism of the media.

Bryant, like Westbrook, is a high volume scorer in his own right, so it makes perfect sense that he came to the defense of a kindred shooting spirit.

Concerning the Thunder’s postseason fate, Westbrook and company clinch the Western Conference’s eighth seed on Wednesday night, so long as they beat the Minnesota Timberwolves and the New Orleans Pelicans lose to the San Antonio Spurs.

Sure, that means the Thunder face the seemingly insurmountable task of upsetting the Golden State Warriors in the first round. But given how the team’s roster has been decimated by injuries all season — most notably being the barely-there presence of Kevin Durant in the lineup — the fact alone that Westbrook could lead the team to the playoffs in the first place is a tremendous accomplishment in its own right.

[H/T Pro Basketball Talk, image credit: Zimbio]