Westbrook has right knee surgery

Annette Crawford
September 12, 2018

Oklahoma City's Russell Westbrook (0) speaks to the media during exit interviews for the Oklahoma City Thunder at the Integris Thunder Development Center in Oklahoma City, Okla., Saturday, April 28, 2018.

The Thunder announced that Russell Westbrook had arthroscopic surgery on right knee Wednesday and will be re-evaluated in four weeks.

Per the Thunder, Westbrook was experiencing inflammation in his knee this past weekend. The Thunder open the season on the road against the defending champion Golden State Warriors on October 16. The team, Westbrook and his representation determined "the best course of action was the proactive procedure, performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache with Thunder medical personnel present at the Kerlan-Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic in Los Angeles", the Thunder said in a release.

While the timing is not ideal with Thunder training camp opening on September 25, the situation is not viewed by the team as anything to be alarmed about, with no lingering issues anticipated to follow the procedure. That means Westbrook nearly certainly will be out for the entire preseason, and the Thunder aren't going to rush him back just to play opening night.

It may turn out to be minor and barely slow Westbrook, but it's something to monitor. Last season the Thunder offense fell off a cliff when Westbrook sat, dropping 9.6 points per 100 possessions.

The surgery will inevitably raise questions about Westbrook's durability going forward. Westbrook turns 30 on November 12.

Westbrook dealt with knee injuries earlier in his career but has played in at least 80 games in each of the past three seasons. Schroder, acquired in a trade of Carmelo Anthony in July, now projects to start in preseason at point guard.

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