Westbrook and Anthony were late scratches in both games, going through workouts prior to the Thunder’s game Thursday against the Los Angeles Lakers and Sunday’s game against Memphis. Their official status for Tuesday’s game against the remodeled Cleveland Cavaliers is unknown, with an update expected after practice on Monday.
“Russ was in there this morning working a little bit, trying to move around, getting some treatment,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said. “Both those guys will continue to do that.”
Both suffered their injuries against the Warriors last Tuesday, with Anthony rolling his right ankle six minutes into the game by stepping on Stephen Curry‘s foot, while Westbrook sprained his left in the second half though he remained in the game.
Against the Lakers the Thunder struggled to score consistently, managing just 81 points in a blowout loss, but improved against the Grizzlies scoring 110 while tying an OKC-era record for made 3-points (16). Paul George led the way with 33 points and 8 assists, with Alex Abrines adding 16.
“It was fun to go out to battle with those guys, I think more so just doing it together with three of our soldiers down,” George said. “It was fun to take on thus challenge, to stay with that winning spirit here regardless of who’s in or who’s out.”
George said with a game and a practice under his belt, he felt much more comfortable as the focal point of the Thunder’s offense, playing much of it at point guard.
“I looked back at the Lakers’ game on different things, but I wanted to see what I missing, what opportunities I was missing,” George said. “I thought I was a little out of my character with how I was trying to play. I thought tonight, I got in my rhythm and stayed in my rhythm and played my game. Second game being together, that group, I thought there was a little more chemistry.”
Against the Lakers in Los Angeles, fans chanted “We want Paul!” at George during the second half, with him saying after the game he didn’t hear the chants. George, a native of Southern California and unrestricted free agent this summer, is viewed as a primary offseason target for the Lakers. In response, Thunder fans chanted “We want Paul” every trip George made to the free throw line against the Grizzlies on Sunday.