Russell Westbrook has knee surgery
Oklahoma City Thunder star guard Russell Westbrook will miss the first four to six weeks of the regular season after undergoing arthroscopic knee surgery Tuesday.
The Thunder announced Tuesday that Westbrook needed the operation after experiencing swelling in his right knee, which he injured during last season's playoffs. The three-time All-Star also underwent surgery on the same knee on April 27 to repair a torn lateral meniscus.
Jesse Johnson/USA TODAY Sports Russell Westbrook has experienced swelling in his surgically repaired knee, prompting another operation that will sideline him for at least the first four weeks of the regular season.
Thunder general manager Sam Presti said in a team release that the swelling in Westbrook's knee was caused by a loose stitch from the previous surgery. Presti also confirmed that Westbrook's meniscus has healed properly.
Presti commended Westbrook for his hard work to rehab from the original surgery but acknowledged that an additional operation provided the 24-year-old with "the best chance" to return at 100 percent.
"Russell has been incredible in his work and rehabilitation," Presti said in the release. "He has been pain-free and has performed at a high level during practice, but has experienced recent swelling that had not subsided.
"After careful consideration and recommendations from the medical team, we elected to do the procedure today based on our consulting physician's belief that the swelling would be alleviated, and in turn give Russell the best chance for sustained performance throughout the season and beyond."
Westbrook averaged 23.2 points and 7.4 assists last season for the Thunder, who finished with the top seed in the Western Conference playoffs. He was injured in Game 2 of the Thunder's first-round series versus the Houston Rockets, which Oklahoma City eventually won in six games.
Oklahoma City clearly missed Westbrook's presence during its five-game postseason elimination by the Memphis Grizzlies in the conference semifinals.