Russell Westbrook admits “this one’s on me, honestly” as he takes blame for Clippers’ latest defeat to Orlando

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After the Clippers surrendered a 39-point lead against the Magic this weekend, they were finally stunned as Orlando beat them 113-108 at home. Most fingers were pointed at Russell Westbrook, but the veteran star was the first to admit his faults. 

As club star Kawhi Leonard was out due to management of his right knee injury, the former Lakers player stepped up to lead his team next to Paul George. Nevertheless, he started flaking as the match progressed, especially when the squad needed him the most in the final push of the contest.

“This one’s on me honestly,” Westbrook said after the game. “I could have been better. Started off good. But just in the second half, was terrible. And I got to do a better job of helping the guys out in the second half and the fourth quarter. So, it’s nothing anybody did. But honestly, it’s on me.”

After 37 minutes on court, the point guard ended the game with 14 points, 9 assists, 5 rebounds and a steal, which is a very similar stat line to his campaign’s averages (15.4 points, 6.0 rebounds, 7.6 assists).

On the other side of the floor, Orlando guard Markelle Fultz took advantage of Westbrook’s six turnovers and registered a career-high 28 points, adding to his tally 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 4 steals. Right at the end of the contest, Fultz dropped all four of the shots he took in the fourth quarter and scored 12 of his points with four minutes remaining.

The Los Angeles side simply couldn’t find the formula to stop him or Wendell Carter Jr., who also hit 12 points in the last quarter. The Magic center scored 27 points, won 12 rebounds and produced 3 steals last night, but his highlight was dropping four 3-pointers to finalize Orlando’s comeback.

“We didn’t finish rotations,” said Paul George, who’s 30 points couldn’t make a difference. “Wendell Carter, he shot it well, but then on some of them, it was just we just didn’t finish rotations and we didn’t take his shot-making serious.”

Teammate Paul George isn’t worried about Westbrook’s weak performance

Post-match, George mentioned he isn’t too preoccupied about Westbrook’s shooting. The 34-year-old only dropped 5-for-14 overall and missed all three of his 3-point attempts this Saturday night in California. To give a bit more perspective, Westbrook has scored just 4-for-22 from behind the three-point line.

“He’s a professional,” George said of his teammate. “He’s a veteran. Top 75 player. He’s going to get through it. He knows to stay confident, he knows that we trust him and got his back, that he’s going to stay in attack mode. I don’t ever worry about Russ’ shooting. I just know what he brings and his value to the team. And that is bigger than anything.

“He just does so much other stuff that I don’t care. He plays hard and that’s a guy that I want to roll with.”

Check out the highlights of this weekend’s matchup between Clippers and Magic:

Just a day later, the Los Angeles squad beat the Trail Blazers 102-117 in Portland this Sunday. The Clippers currently sit in a comfortable fifth place in the Western standings with a 38-34 record.

Most of our recommended sport betting sites rank them as the team with the seventh best odds (+1400) to conquer the NBA title this year, and they’ll keep contending especially is Kawhi Leonard is healthy.

Antonio is a life long sports enthusiast and professional journalist, who shares an obssesive urge to find and dig up the most interesting facts to guide gamblers towards more exciting, yet safe bets. In his own words, ''you can never really know enough about the things you love''.

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