ThunderNotes: Russell Westbrook, Carmelo Anthony return to the lineup

OKLAHOMA CITY — Russell Westbrook and Carmelo Anthony returned to play Tuesday when their Oklahoma City Thunder took on the Cleveland Cavaliers. Neither was on a minutes restriction.

The Thunder do not expect Wednesday’s game against the Memphis Grizzlies to present issues, either, even though it will be the second half of a back-to-back.

“We’ll play the game [with] normal rotations and normal minutes for those guys…But right now, those guys are fully cleared to play,” Thunder coach Billy Donovan said before the Cavs game.

Westbrook and Anthony had missed the team’s two previous games with ankle sprains. Anthony sprained his right ankle during the first quarter of Feb. 6’s victory over the Golden State Warriors. Westbrook suffered a sprained left ankle during the same game but played through it that night.

Donovan had started veterans Patrick Patterson and Raymond Felton in Anthony’s and Westbrook’s place. 

• Shooting for the stars: Donovan stuck with 3-point specialist Alex Abrines as his starting shooting guard Tuesday. It was the second consecutive game Abrines has started. He scored 16 points and sank four 3-pointers during his first start, which came Sunday against the Memphis Grizzlies.

Donovan had started wing Josh Huestis during the previous two games, a loss to Los Angeles and a win over Golden State. He started rookie wing Terrance Ferguson during the five games before that.

Usual starting

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