The Warriors and Rockets saved the fireworks for the end.
It wasn’t a very competitive game between Golden State and Houston at Chase Center on Thursday night. The superior Rockets coasted to a 135-105 victory and led by double digits for the vast majority of the contest. The Warriors had trouble containing Houston’s star backcourt of James Harden and Russell Westbrook, who combined for 50 points in the victory. Westbrook scored 21, but he might have added more to his total if he hadn’t been ejected in the fourth quarter.
It all started when Westbrook elbowed Golden State’s Damion Lee while going for a rebound. The Rockets’ guard then appeared to taunt Lee and stare him down before getting into multiple verbal exchanges with Juan Toscano-Anderson, Kevon Looney, Klay Thompson, Andrew Wiggins and Marquese Chriss, the latter three of whom were located on the Warriors’ bench. Westbrook had already been assessed a technical earlier in the game, and his resulting technical from the fourth-quarter incident fulfilled an automatic ejection.
The two technicals increased Westbrook’s season total to 13, which now leads the league. Draymond Green, who was not on the court at the time of the lightly-physical altercation, ranks second in the NBA with 12.
After the game, Westbrook denied intentionally elbowing Lee and insisted he was unfairly treated by the officials.
Westbrook and the Rockets got the last laugh Thursday. But you can be damn sure the Warriors will remember that one next season when they’re back to full strength.
Watch Russell Westbrook get ejected for elbowing Warriors’ Damion Lee originally appeared on NBC Sports Bay Area