Many have tried and few have succeeded in locking down Russell Westbrook this season.
The Oklahoma City Thunder star is averaging a triple-double this season and has asserted himself offensively in a major way after running mate Kevin Durant left for Golden State in offseason free agency.
Westbrook's explosiveness and offensive will have worn down would-be defenders at a tiresome rate.
The former UCLA star met his match, though, in Sunday's 104-89 loss at Dallas.
Not only were Westbrook's outputs down from his season averages -- 29 points compared to a 31.7 average, six rebounds down from 10.6 per game, and five assists next to a 10.0 average -- but his shooting percentages were far behind his norms as well. He was 8 of 24 from the field for a 33.3%, down from his 41.9% season average, and 2-of-10 shooting (20%) for 3-pointers, down from his 33.7 season mark.
But worst of all, Westbrook was the victim of a highlight-reel defensive sequence that could be one to remember if the Mavericks continue their recent hot streak.
With the Mavericks leading by 21 points midway through the third quarter, Wesley Matthews put the clamps on Russ with an amazing individual effort.
Westbrook brought the ball up the right wing and made two attempts to drive into the lane. Matthews forced him to give up his dribble and pass off to Enes Kanter on the perimeter.
Matthews was just getting started.
Kanter then reloaded it to Westbrook in the post, who had his back to the basket from about 14 feet. Matthews then knocked the ball away back to the 3-point line and Westbrook retreated to recover it.
As the clock wound down, Westbrook then lost the ball on the crossover, recovered it once again and threw up a wild fadeaway with Matthews all up in his face, resulting in an airball.
Have a look at the video and keep in mind that this was Matthews' first game back after missing two games with a hip injury.
Matthews, who was undrafted out of Marquette in 2009, has been one of the nice NBA stories over the past few years.
He started off in Utah as a rookie, appearing in all 82 games and starting in 48.
Then, he blossomed with the Portland Trail Blazers but tore his Achilles late in the 2014-15 season right as he was about to hit free agency.
Dallas gave him a four-year, $70-million deal anyway, and Matthews has paid them back, starting in all 135 games he's played there in two seasons.
Plays like he made on Sunday are showing everyone why Dallas stuck with Matthews despite the injury.News Now - Sport News