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Russell Westbrook tells story about Michael Jordan on 'The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon'

Jimmy Fallon couldn’t tell if Russell Westbrook was kidding when he said he was enjoying being confined to his home with three children under the age of 3. But Westbrook clarified that he was being sincere.

“I actually get to see my kids wake up every morning,” Westbrook said, “which is something I don’t get to do often.”

Westbrook joined Fallon on “The Tonight Show” on Tuesday. Westbrook first became a “Tonight Show” regular when he played for the Thunder, and he’s made two appearances since being traded to Houston a year ago. 

On Tuesday, an “at home edition” of the show,  Westbrook and Fallon spoke via video chat. In addition to talking about Westbrook’s family, the two talked basketball. 

“I’m always ready, Jimmy,” Westbrook said when Fallon asked him if he’d be ready to launch straight into the playoffs, if that’s how the NBA restarts the season.

Westbrook also gave a glowing review of "The Last Dance," ESPN’s 10-part documentary series on Michael Jordan and the 1997-98 Bulls. Episodes 1 and 2 debuted on Sunday.

Westbrook told Fallon a personal Michael Jordan story from his youth. When Westbrook was 10 or 11 years old, he said, he went to one of Jordan’s camps. At the end of camp, every kid was given a chance to get an autograph from Jordan. Westbrook’s parents gave him a basketball to get signed.

“I don’t know what I was thinking,” Westbrook said, “but when it was my time to go, I was in the middle of a game, I was playing pickup with other kids. And then my coach was like, ‘Come on, you’re going to miss the opportunity to get  a picture with Michael Jordan and an autograph from Michael Jordan. Myself said, ‘Ah, I’m OK. I don’t need it right now.’”

When it clicked, and he realized what he’d missed, young Westbrook was upset. Now, Westbrook has a signature Jordan Brand shoe line.

While on “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon,” Westbrook also highlighted two charities: Comp-U-Doptand the Angeleno Campaign.

Related Photos
Houston's Russell Westbrook (0) waves to the crowd following the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City,  Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020.  [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

Houston's Russell Westbrook (0) waves to the crowd following the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman]

<figure><img src="//cdn2.newsok.biz/cache/r960-033ae50a89593ed3eb94128403980b67.jpg" alt="Photo - Houston's Russell Westbrook (0) waves to the crowd following the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] " title="Houston's Russell Westbrook (0) waves to the crowd following the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] "><figcaption>Houston's Russell Westbrook (0) waves to the crowd following the NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Houston Rockets at the Chesapeake Energy Arena in Oklahoma City, Thursday, Jan. 9, 2020. [Sarah Phipps/The Oklahoman] </figcaption></figure>
Maddie Lee

Maddie Lee followed an NBA team from Seattle to Oklahoma City, she just took a 10-year detour in between. Lee joined the Oklahoman in October 2018 as a Thunder beat writer, fresh off a stint in Oxford, Miss., where she covered Ole Miss for the... Read more ›

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