After setting the NBA on fire and averaging a triple-double for the season, Russell Westbrook was always going to be the NBA's Most Valuable Player, and last night in New York City it became official. So, him winning the award at the first ever NBA Awards show was not a surprise; what was a surprise is that Russell Westbrook made me cry like a baby.
Russ primes the water works pump at around the 4:25 minute of his speech, when he starts talking about his family. He first thanked his mom and dad for providing for him and his brother and shared some very touching personal anecdotes that made both Russ and his parents get a little weepy. But then he got to his brother Raynard and, hoo boy, was that something.
While Raynard is his younger brother, Russ said he looks up to him. Russ got most emotional talking about their relationship. He revealed that Raynard texts him at halftime of every single game.
"To my little brother, my road dog. You mean so much to me. You're my role model. I look up to, man. I truly look up to you. You're amazed and blessed. I'm so happy to have you as my brother. I wouldn't trade it for anything in the world. A lot of you guys may not know, but my brother just got his masters two weeks ago. I'm so proud of him, not just for that but the man he is today. Just for helping me, lifting me up every single day. My brother, he texts me every single game at halftime. Every game. Since I've been in the league he texts me every game at halftime. He don't got to do that, man, but he does that because he's got a kind heart and he looks out for me, man. I love you from the bottom of my heart, brother. I promise you I appreciate everything you do for me. I love you brother."
Gah. I think it was the "kind heart" that got me. You don't say something like that about someone unless it's 100 percent true. Also, please note and appreciate the effortless brotherly dap and lean in for the hug.
It was always presumed that Russ was spurred to further greatness this season because of Kevin Durant's departure. In his newly unfettered role, he went bonkers on the league and officially won MVP. Last night Russ showed he was not only Durant's equal on the court, but also his equal in making random folks cry from nice speeches about family members during MVP speeches.