Thunder PG Westbrook fined for salty postgame language

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

It is the Game 3 of Rockets and OKC Thunder in the NBA Playoffs 2017. We think of Harden as the perimeter shooter and Westbrook as only a guy who drives, but those weren't their identities this season.

Atlanta will host game three on Saturday. The Washington Wizards and the Toronto Raptors are in action again.

The Rockets, who took third seed in the tough Western Conference have made no mistakes to start their charge at a championship, taking both games at home. He did the job on the glass with 14 rebounds, but he can not be so outplayed by Marcin Gortat again if Atlanta is going to head home with a split.

But the Rockets were able to make a move, cutting the lead from 15 early in the second quarter to five in the final seconds of the half thanks to their ability to get to the free-throw line as the Thunder failed to do the same.

NEED TO KNOW: Round 1 of the James Harden-Russell Westbrook matchup was no contest.

Houston Rockets Lineups: PG - Patrick Beverly, SG - James Harden, SF - Trevor Ariza, PF - Ryan Anderson, C - Clint Capella. After winning the battle of the boards by 15 in game one, the Rockets were reminded on Wednesday why OKC's the best rebounding team in basketball. Houston also converted on 12 of 14 second-chance opportunities in the series opener, a big reason for the rout. However, good teams bounce back from losses like that.

Westbrook was at his best for much of the night; trusting his teammates, disrupting the Rockets offense, and driving to the rim instead of settling for jumpers. He finished with 22 points on 6-of-23 shots, with more turnovers (nine) than assists (7), and a minus-25.

INJURY UPDATE: Houston's Sam Dekker (left hand and wrist) is out.

Victor Oladipo struggled with his shot, too, to the tune of 1-for-12 for 6 points.

Game 4 is set for Sunday at 2:30 p.m.

On the line for these two teams is more than a place in the next round of the playoffs.

In Salt Lake City, Los Angeles point guard Chris Paul scored 24 of his 34 points in the second half as the Clippers rallied for a 111-106 victory over the Utah Jazz. And if Durant can't play - he's questionable with a calf strain and didn't practice Tuesday - Curry and Thompson would be asked for more anyway. "He played an exceptional game".

PRESSURE IS ON: An argument could be made it's actually on Golden State.

After heavy amounts of criticism found him, as it often does, following his wild Game 2, Westbrook played remarkably controlled and composed in Game 3.

The series moves to Portland for game three on Saturday.

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