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Charles Barkley: "Even MJ Didn't Play As Hard As Westbrook Does"

(via Washington Post)

(via Washington Post)

For all of the hate Russell Westbrook gets for his ball-stopping offense and inefficient shooting, nobody can say the guy doesn't work. Every night, Russ plays with a passion and aggression on the court that is, frankly, rarely seen in today's time.

In fact, according to Charles Barkley in a previous quote, it's unlike anything he's ever seen. When asked to comment on if players of previous eras would've roughed up Westbrook back in the day, Chuck offered up a very bold answer.

Oh no that's a fight you're not looking for. That's a man. I've never seen a player give max effort every single night like him.. Even MJ didn't play as hard as Westbrook does, and MJ's the greatest of all time.. You got to respect that.

Considering Michael Jordan was famous for his passionate play-style on the court, and Barkley was around to witness it in person, the claim that Russ' play surpasses that is truly an interesting take.

After being traded from Oklahoma City, Russ will have to adjust his playstyle and approach to the game if he is to maximize his fit with James Harden. Is letting go of that passionate fire part of the plan?

For Wetsbrook's sake, and the Rocket's, let us hope not.