We won't know if OKC's own Russell Westbrook will be crowned as the NBA's MVP until it's announced on June 26. But after the way he's played this season, averaging a triple-double and dragging the Thunder to the playoffs after losing Kevin Durant, it's hard to argue that he's not one of the best players in all of basketball.

Jerry West, the image of the NBA's logo, went further than that in a recent appearance on ESPN's "The Jump," putting him in the same light as Michael Jordan.

"I always felt that maybe Michael Jordan was one of those unbelievably gifted athletes," West said. "But we're looking at a reincarnation of Michael Jordan who might be a little bit better in terms of athletic ability."

Ironically, Russell Westbrook's brand is tied with Jordan and Nike. He's the face of the Jordan franchise among active basketball players who sport the gear.

Westbrook is not Jordan. I think we can all agree on that. But this isn't that crazy of a comparison. We're talking about two amazing athletes who are stone-cold competitors and scorers, who do much of their damage in the midrange and at the rim, who can get hot from 3 from time to time but don't live out there. Jordan was a passionate, wear-your-heart-on-the-sleeves player just like Westbrook is. And that's something Jordan himself can agree on.

"Thirty years ago, that's me," Jordan said of Westbrook to SLAM Online last August. "The attitude, trying to prove myself, showing so much passion for the game of basketball. You see it in his play. You can tell he loves the game, he plays with energy and flair."