San Antonio Spurs rookie Jeremy Sochan said he was “not intending on being disrespectful” to Russell Westbrook when he associated the word “bricks” with the Los Angeles Lakers star.
In a widely circulated social video that went viral over the weekend, Sochan and fellow Spurs rookie Malaki Branham are shown participating in a word-association guessing game during this month’s NBA summer league in Las Vegas.
Brantham, hoping Sochan would guess the word “triple-double,” offered his teammate the hint: “Russell Westbrook get ’em a lot.” Sochan immediately guessed, “Bricks,” prompting Brantham to respond, “No, no, no!”
Sochan, who eventually guessed “triple-double,” took to Twitter on Sunday to address the incident.
Sochan, 19, said in a later tweet that Westbrook has been his “idol since I started watching the NBA” and added that his dog’s name is Russell — an homage to the former NBA MVP.
Westbrook, 33, struggled through an uneven first season with the Lakers in 2021-22, averaging just 18.5 points per game while shooting 29.8% from 3-point range.
Agent, Russ part over ‘irreconcilable differences’
The nine-time All-Star guard has been outspoken about the widespread criticism and derision he’s faced in recent seasons, saying earlier this year that mocking nicknames like “Westbrick” are “shaming my name, my legacy for my kids.”
Westbrook parted ways last week with longtime agent Thad Foucher, who cited “irreconcilable differences” in a statement to ESPN and suggested that there was no longer full alignment with Westbrook about he should want to remain with the Lakers for the final season of his $47 million contract.
Sochan was selected by the Spurs with the ninth overall pick in this year’s NBA draft after one season at Baylor, where he averaged 9.2 points per game and shot 58.5% from the floor and 29.6% from 3-point range.
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