Yesterday at exit interviews with the media for Oklahoma City Thunder players, superstar point guard Russell Westbrook told reporters about his intentions to remain in Oklahoma City long-term.
The question arose during the interview with Westbrook because the 28-year-old Westbrook is eligible for another contract extension this summer after agreeing to a three-year, $85 million extension last off-season after Kevin Durant left the Thunder for the Golden State Warriors.
Under the NBA’s new collective bargaining agreement, Westbrook can sign a five-year extension with the Thunder that is known as the Designated Player Exception. This five-year contract would be worth $219 million, an estimation done by The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski.
Here’s the full quote from Westbrook, per ESPN’s Royce Young:
“That’s something, like I said, I haven’t thought about anything, obviously,” Westbrook said. “Everybody knows that I like Oklahoma City and I love being here and I love everybody here. But I haven’t thought about that. Obviously, Oklahoma City is a place that I want to be.”
While Westbrook’s current contract could last through the 2018-2019 season, the deal will likely end after the 2017-2018 season if the Thunder and Westbrook don’t knockout another long-term deal this summer. No matter what, Westbrook will make $28.5 million in 2017-2018, but he can opt-out of making $30.5 million in 2018-2019 if he chooses too.
Right now as it stands, the Thunder have 11 players signed for next season. Westbrook, Steven Adams, Victor Oladipo, Enes Kanter, Alex Abrines, Kyle Singler, Doug McDermott, Domantas Sabonis, Jerami Grant, Josh Huestis, and Semaj Christon make up those 11 players. Many people say Westbrook needs more shooters around him to be successful, so you know likely be something Sam Presti and his team target this off-season.
Westbrook of course averaged a triple double during the regular season by averaging 31.6 points, 10.7 rebounds, and 10.4 assists per game, giving him an overall total of 42 triple doubles in 81 regular season games. For the playoffs, he also averaged a triple double, with 37.4 points, 11.6 rebounds, and 10.8 assists per game.
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