Wow, OKC fans thought losing game seven was tough. They never thought they would be blindsided by the most “loyal” player in the NBA. But D-Day happened in Oklahoma early on the 4th of July. Kevin Durant left the Thunder for the Warriors.
He said he made his decision based on solely basketball purposes and if you look at the starting lineup for the Warriors it is hard to say that isn’t an amazing team, but him leaving shook the core of OKC fans. So now OKC got nothing for the greatest player in franchise history. He walked away leaving OKC at the ball without a date so to speak.
So now comes the hard part. Westbrook has a year left on his contract and will not sign an extension due to the major cap increase coming yet again next year. That’s not to say he would not re-sign with OKC but they would be playing the same game they just did with OKC. I know this is going to be tough to swallow but OKC NEEDS to trade Westbrook. They need to get it all over at once like ripping off a band-aid. OKC needs to get something to build for the future and Westbrook would get them those building blocks.
Westbrook is a top five player in the league and the guys every fan is clinging on to going, “We still has Westbrook we don’t need KD we have him.” He is the safety blanket for the fans right now, but if OKC wants to compete in the coming years they need to stockpile players and picks.
Westbrook went to UCLA located in California. He loves LA and the Lakers love him. The trade makes sense and OKC could get some great prospects in return. Trade Westbrook for De’Angelo Russell, Brandon Ingram and a couple of future draft picks. Both sides would benefit and most likely accept the deal.
The Lakers want that big name and Westbrook is that. OKC wants players who can develop under the system and turn out to be stars which Ingram, a 6’ 9”, skinny shooting guard who averaged 17 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 assist in college. They would also get a pretty good young point guard in Russell. They also have Payne who will immerge as one of the better point guards in the league. Plus they would get some picks and Presti can work wonders with those. Ala Durant, Westbrook, Ibaka, Adams, Harden.
So it would suck to watch OKC flounder at the bottom of the league next year, but fans would much rather see a year or two of floundering over 10 plus years of living in the cellar of the West.
So as much as it sucks, rip the band-aid off OKC, trade Westbrook.