Russell Westbrook, who has replaced the Washington Wizards’ guard John Wall, told the media that he was planning to give back to the city during his first appearance with the team on Saturday.
“I am a man of my word, so if I said that I’m going to give back and do things for the community, then I will,” said Westbrook in a Zoom call, according to DCist. “There’s so much African American history here… and I’m definitely already doing my due diligence on who I need to talk to and understanding how I can impact.”
When asked what is most misunderstood about him, the 32-year-old NBA player told reporters that 90 or 100 percent of what is said about him was not true.
“Because a lot of times, the things that are made up, people don’t actually know me to be able to say anything about me or what I am about or what I believe in,” he explained. “The biggest thing for me is just kind of going and being myself, which is easy because being myself, I can be genuine and loyal and understanding. Obviously, I am not the easiest guy to understand, whatever, watch play, whatever people may think.”
The former Houston Rockets star guard joined the Wizards after completing his ninth All-NBA season and 11th year overall. He carries injury risk on a surgically-repaired knee, but averaged 27.2 points and seven assists as an All-Star last season.
Westbrook reportedly showed up to his first practice with the Wizards two hours early on Sunday.
The Wizards are paying $133 million over three years to Westbrook in the hope of him elevating them to a playoff level.