Russell Westbrook's mega-contract could impact his decision on future — Paul George

by Susie Olson October 1, 2017, 0:31
Russell Westbrook's mega-contract could impact his decision on future — Paul George

Both will upgrade the Thunder's roster now, give them future flexibility and cost very little. The contract is the biggest in National Basketball Association history.Tack on Westbrook's $28.5 million salary for this season and the total salary is $233 million over six years.

Russell Westbrook signed the biggest total contract in National Basketball Association history on the birthday of Kevin Durant.

Still, with Westbrook now under contract with the Thunder through the 2022-23 season, the Thunder's prospects to retain their stars becomes a much stronger proposition. That thought was prevailing around the National Basketball Association, as well, with multiple executives who outsiders thought could have had a shot at Westbrook in free agency believing the nine-year veteran would commit to Oklahoma City for the future.

OKC and its fans were sweating earlier in the offseason. Because of Westbrook's contract extension, there's at least a better chance that George and Anthony will choose do to do the same.

But Anthony will be 34 in May and likely won't command more than that per season in free agency.

That date is October 16, which is better known in National Basketball Association circles as the final day that teams can sign players to extensions if certain conditions are met. The rise has been remarkable, and Oklahoma City has gotten to witness every moment of it. Eventually, Westbrook agreed to commit to OKC.

This is a no-brainer extension from the Thunder's point of view.

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Westbrook signed an extension last summer in wake of Kevin Durant's departure to the Warriors, but with an opt-out next summer, the Thunder were facing the possibility of Westbrook, George and new addition Carmelo Anthony (player option) all hitting the open market and leaving next July. Now, they have a reason to stay.

When you are able to keep an MVP for multiple seasons, everyone will be happy.

Westbrook is coming off the best season of his career thus far, averaging a triple-double, in which he ran away with the NBA's MVP award. He has proved himself as one of the NBA's most established players and has developed quickly into a full-fledged leader. He produces absurd statistics night in and night out.

Getting Westbrook signed to a long-term deal will benefit the front office greatly.

Westbrook, in a statement, said that there's no other place he'd rather be than in Oklahoma City.

Anthony is one of three players in the NBA (LeBron James, Dirk Nowitzki) with a no-trade clause built into his contract.

Thunder superfan John "Thunder Boy Wonder" Bling greeted fans as they entered the team shop Friday afternoon.

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