The future of the Thunder is up in the air for the next year. All the questions fall on Russell Westbrook. Will he stay in OKC for the long-term? Can Westbrook lead a team to a successful season? How many triple-doubles can Westbrook get on a team that he leads by himself? Well… the first question is getting closer and closer to being answered every day.
In case you did not hear, Dion Waiters officially moved on from the Thunder today. He signed a one year deal with the Miami Heat for $2.9 million. Such a small amount for Waiters that it is amazing the Thunder were not able to retain the shooting guard. Here is the trick though, it might all be apart of Sam Presti’s plan to keep Russell Westbrook on the team for the future. The Thunder no longer have a cap hold because of Waiters’ contract and can now use that money to do the most important thing, work out a contract extension with Russell Westbrook.
Reports are now out from ESPN’s own Thunder writer, Royce Young, that Westbrook does not want to be traded from the team this season. Westbrook is committing to the Thunder and this willingness to stay is a great sign. There is much to be happy about when you hear this news if you are a Thunder fan but there should still be somewhat of a fear that Westbrook may leave next offseason. If there is one thing that has been learnt this past few months it is to not read too much into a superstars words, or even their actions.
Nevertheless, the longer Westbrook is on the team the better it will be for Oklahoma City. Westbrook is a superstar who is not going to back down from any challenges. Earlier in the offseason after Durant left Royce Young also stated that Durant being gone might make Westbrook more likely to stay with the Thunder.
Westbrook has what he has always wanted, a team to his own. Not only does he have that, but he has a talented team and one that can build around him for the future. The pressure is on for Russell Westbrook as he holds the fate of Thunder basketball in his hands.