Los Angeles Lakers superstar LeBron James gave his best to reassure Russell Westbrook that everything would be just fine after the guard's disappointing debut with the Lakers. Westbrook had only eight points, five rebounds and four assists the Lakers suffered a 121-114 loss to the Golden State Warriors at Staples Center.
"I told Russ to go home and watch a comedy," James said. "Do something that can put a smile on his face. He's so hard on himself. I told him, 'Don't be so hard on yourself. It's one game.' " Lakers star big man Anthony Davis also tried to encourage Westbrook to keep his spirits high.
"My first time, I sat next to LB, he looked at me, and he said, 'You're fine, this is Game 1,'" Davis recalled. "He's laughing. He's joking on the phone. And I'm like, 'Why am I upset then?' And I kind of just went with the flow.
And it's the same thing with Russ. And I told him the same thing. 'I'm the same way you were.' We said some things to him, and he smiled and things like that, so I expect him to be better in the game Friday."
Westbrook acknowledged he talked with James, Davis
"We talked," was all Westbrook would say about the conversation with Davis and James. James underlined that he doesn't want to see Westbrook too hard on himself.
"I just don't want him to be so hard on himself. That was the one thing that I hoped to get through to him, don't be so hard on himself," James reiterated. "Go home and you're going to see three babies that he has that might be asleep, but they'll put a smile on his face.
He has a beautiful wife and family. So, at the end of the day, you go home and you're really like, 'OK, that was not that bad. It's really not that bad.' " Meanwhile, Lakers head coach Frank Vogel noted it will take time for Westbrook to get adjusted to the new system.
"Him more than anybody, it's going to be an adjustment period," Vogel said. "He's coming into our culture, our system. He's the new guy, and he's got to find his way. It's difficult, when you're used to being the guy who has the ball most nights, to be able to play off of others like Bron and AD.
So it's just a little bit different for him. He's going to be great for us, but it's going to be an adjustment period."