Russell Westbrook is sick of the unfair labels he believes he's been painted with by the NBA.
The Houston Rockets' star point guard received two technical fouls and was ejected from Thursday night's 135-105 win over the Warriors at Chase Center. The second technical came late in the game. Westbrook elbowed Damion Lee while going for a rebound, and then appeared to stare Lee down after having the ball taken away from him.
Westbrook started walking toward the Warriors' bench and was hit with a technical foul while both were jawing back and forth. The All-Star point guard defended himself after the game, noting he didn't intentionally elbow Lee and that he believes he is held to a different standard.
Russ explains the situation that got him a technical and ejection pic.twitter.com/ZojNpcG5Wj— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) February 21, 2020
"I think it's a situation where, I hold myself to a very, very, very high standard," Westbrook said after the game. "I think with the refs, the fans, the media, the NBA, I'm put in a position where I'm not allowed to really do much. Obviously, I’m an emotional guy. If you watch the clip, obviously I hit Lee. It wasn’t on purpose. I was going to the glass. He got hit. He said something to me. I said something to him. I’m standing there. The guy snatched the ball out of my hand. Guys are coming up to me. I didn’t move. But I’m always the one that gets painted to be the bad guy in the whole situation.
“They asked me to walk towards the Warriors bench," Westbrook continued. "So, I’m just over their walking to the bench. One of their young fellas tell me, ‘Why you walking over here, talking mess with me?’ I turned around and said, 'What you say?’ Now, everybody’s running over to me. Then, (Kevon) Looney steps in front of me. I’m in a position, 'Russ is being Russ,’ which nobody knows what that means.
“I have to do a better job of holding myself to a very, very high standard,” Westbrook continued. “I’ll make sure I leave no room for error to allow somebody to paint me as being a bad guy. I just think it’s unfair that after all that, I’m the only one that gets a tech or gets kicked out. That’s not fair. I don’t care what nobody says. There are certainly other people involved in it that were doing so many things that's not OK. But I’m the one that gets a tech, gets ejected and everybody else is cool and goes back to playing."
Westbrook now has 13 technical fouls on the season, putting him three away from an automatic one-game suspension that comes with getting 16 technical fouls in the season.
The best part of the light dust-up was the look on Klay Thompson's face as Westbrook was jawing with the Dubs' bench.
Klay wasn’t having any of it after Russ got T’d up 🤣 pic.twitter.com/co1N3EajWN— Warriors on NBCS (@NBCSWarriors) February 21, 2020
Teams are enjoying piling on the Warriors this season, but there's no doubt Klay -- who was ruled out for the season Thursday -- will remember this once he returns next season.