Clippers Snap Skid After Russell Westbrook Volunteers to Come Off Bench

Say this much for Russell Westbrook — he’s a team player at the stage of his career where he just wants to win.

So Westbrook told coach Tyronn Lue he’d come off the bench to help the Clippers, who had lost six straight.

Well, Westbrook came off the bench — and the steak is over. Maybe those things are related. Maybe not, too. But whatever the case, the Clippers will take it.

Final score: Clippers 106, visiting Rockets 100 on Friday in an In-Season Tournament game.

It was also a game in which James Harden emerged as the hero, hitting a dagger 3-pointer while being fouled against his former team. The end result was a killer of a four-point play. And yes, the was LA’s first win since the Clippers landed Harden in a trade. So mark the record as 1-5 with Harden and 4-7 overall.

“We’ve still got a long way to go, but obviously it felt good to get a win,” Harden told reporters. “You can’t take those for granted. But like I continue to say, it’s a building process, and I can see a lot of (areas for) improvement on both sides of the ball to correct and get used to.”

As for Westbrook, Lue said moving the veteran guard to a reserve role was worth a shot.

“Just got to get Russ comfortable,” Lue said. “Just switching units and playing with different guys, got to get him used to it. It’s tough to go from starting to the bench, especially the caliber of player he is. We’ve just got to make sure we’ve got the right people on the floor with him.”

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