Will Russell Westbrook Play Tonight? Rockets vs Wizards: Injury Update, Probable Lineup, and Predictions

Published 01/26/2021, 1:00 PM EST
Dec 29, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Russell Westbrook (4) reacts after a shot against the Chicago Bulls during the first half at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports


While James Harden will not get to play against his former team until March, it is Russell Westbrook who will fight the Rockets first. The Washington Wizards are next to face the Houston side in a game that is marred by many players missing out.

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The Rockets are high on confidence after their recent wins against Detroit Pistons and the Dallas Mavericks. While on a downside, the Wizards have won only one of their last five games. What are some highlights ahead of this game and who all are going to miss taking part?

Rockets vs Wizards: Injuries and Lineup prediction

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Dec 28, 2020; Denver, Colorado, USA; Houston Rockets forward Christian Wood (35) shoots the ball in the fourth quarter against the Denver Nuggets at Ball Arena. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Houston-based franchise is yet to play Dante Exum or Kevin Porter Jr. On their injury list, they have Center Christian Wood (ankle). He is doubtful for the game against the Wizards, and this is a big blow to the Rockets.

Their probable starting unit – John Wall (PG), Victor Oladipo (SG), Eric Gordon (SF), PJ Tucker (PF), and DeMarcus Cousins (C) 

The Wizards, on the other hand, are in a thick soup. They have six players ruled out because of the health & safety protocols. These players are Ish Smith, Troy Brown Jr., Davis Bertans, Deni Avdija, Moritz Wagner, and Rui Hachimura. As if this was already not enough, they also have point guard Raul Neto questionable because of groin soreness. 

Wizards’ probable starting five – Russell Westbrook (PG), Jerome Robinson (SG), Isaac Bonga (SF), Bradley Beal (PF), and Robin Lopez (C) 

Who wins?

Dec 29, 2020; Washington, District of Columbia, USA; Washington Wizards guard Bradley Beal (3) gestures during the first half against the Chicago Bulls at Capital One Arena. Mandatory Credit: POOL PHOTOS-USA TODAY Sports

The shorthanded Wizards have recently signed centers Jordan Bell (Grizzlies) and Alex Len (Raptors). Their recent game against the Spurs ended in a loss as they played after a gap of 13 days. Their entire bench is out because of the protocols, and that has made their starters even more burdened. 

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Bradley Beal is the only player who is taking the offensive command for the team. Russell Westbrook is averaging close to scoring a triple-double in every outing, but he is far from his personal best. His fitness is also under question, and this has further tied their hands. 

However, the Rockets have found their redemption in DeMarcus Cousins. The 6’10” Center player, along with guard Eric Gordon, helped them win against a scary Mavericks. John Wall played restricted minutes, but the new signing in Victor Oladipo filled the gap. Also, one can expect Wall to play bigger minutes against his former team.

From here, it looks obvious that the Rockets will win with a double-figure margin over the Wiz.

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Read also – Russell Westbrook Details the Impact Kobe Bryant Had on Him Growing Up

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Sourabh Singh

1431 articles

Sourabh Singh is an NBA sports analyst for EssentiallySports, who has been working with the site since May 2020. Prior to this, he functioned as Managing Editor at WittyFeed, followed by a stint at Decathlon. The Sports Management graduate leads an active lifestyle, veering to the mountains for off-trail adventures.

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