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Rockets' Russell Westbrook in 'Pretty Good Shape' After COVID-19 Diagnosis

Timothy Rapp@@TRappaRTFeatured ColumnistJuly 19, 2020

Houston Rockets' Russell Westbrook (0) brings the ball up the court against the Los Angeles Clippers during the second half of an NBA basketball game Thursday, March 5, 2020, in Houston. (AP Photo/David J. Phillip)
David J. Phillip/Associated Press

Houston Rockets head coach Mike D'Antoni offered an update Sunday on star point guard Russell Westbrook, who was diagnosed with COVID-19. 

"I do hear that he's in pretty good shape and has been ramping up so hopefully it's fairly seamless, with some precaution obviously," he said of Westbrook's eventual return to action, per Alykhan Bijani of The Athletic. "[Medical staff] will determine when Russell is ready to go, or when he's ready to play 20 or 30 minutes."

Westbrook posted last week that he had registered a positive test for the coronavirus:

Russell Westbrook @russwest44

https://t.co/Kq7CE26TxD

He was one of three Rockets players who didn't travel with the team to the Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, Florida, for the NBA's restart. James Harden and Luc Mbah a Moute didn't either, though Harden has since joined the team and practiced Thursday.

"I'm happy I'm here," Harden told reporters. "It felt actually really, really good to be out here with the guys, getting after it, just pushing our way. Every single day is going to be a new challenge for us."

Houston Rockets @HoustonRockets

#13 hasn’t lost a step! https://t.co/DExUbfZdgH

D'Antoni was happy with Harden's return to the team and how quickly he got back into the flow of things.

"He looked good," he said. "He probably was rusty for about 30 seconds. ... A good beginning."

The Rockets will go as far as Harden and Westbrook can take them. Combined, the pair have averaged 61.9 points, 14.4 rebounds and 14.4 assists per game in the 2019-20 season. If the Rockets are going to make a deep run come the playoffs—they've already clinched a postseason berth—it will be that duo that sparks it. 

For now, however, simply getting Westbrook cleared to play and back on the court is the primary concern. 

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