Westbrook Signs 5-Year Extension With Thunder

by Eddie Scott September 30, 2017, 13:49
Westbrook Signs 5-Year Extension With Thunder

On Friday, ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski reported that Westbrook signed a five-year, $205 million extension with the Thunder.

The deal begins with the 2018-19 season, and puts the 28-year-old Westbrook under contract with the Thunder through the 2022-23 National Basketball Association season. The reigning MVP could still average another triple-double and should have his team near the top of the Western Conference standings. The contract begins with the 2018-19 season, running through the 2022-23 campaign, and gives Westbrook the biggest guaranteed contract in the National Basketball Association.

"Like I said before, man, this is a place I want to be", Westbrook said on Monday. This move solidifies him as the face of the Thunder for the next 10+ years.

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So, why did Westbrook take so long to sign the deal? In 2016-17, Westbrook had 42 triple-doubles while leading the league in scoring.

Westbrook has career averages of 22.7 points, 7.9 assists and 6.2 rebounds.

"I wish I could tell you that any of us had any idea that he would become the player that he has developed into", Thunder General Manager and Executive Vice President Sam Presti said.

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"We are extremely fortunate to have an athlete, competitor and person such as Russell wear the Thunder uniform", Presti said. Kevin Durant's departure from Oklahoma City in last year's free agency was devastating for the Thunder fans who were afraid that Russell Westbrook might do the same. "To have him cement his legacy as a leader as we enter into our 10th season in Oklahoma City is extraordinary". Oklahoma City notably starts the 2017-18 regular season on October 19 against the aforementioned Knicks. When he sat, the rest of the team slumped; the Thunder scored 11.5 fewer points and allowed 1.9 more points per 100 possessions when Westbrook went to the bench.

It is not the most positive sign for Thunder fans that Westbrook is still not signed to the team long-term, but it may just have to be something they deal with as they get ready to again witness the dynamic guard do his thing this upcoming National Basketball Association season.

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