42 triple doubles to complete arguably one of the greatest NBA seasons in history. An unfortunate first-round exit sent the future MVP winner to the offseason. Now the offseason is here, Russell Westbrook now becomes the first priority on the Thunder’s list.
Because of Oklahoma City’s need for Westbrook and Westbrook’s love of Oklahoma City. Westbrook could become the highest player in NBA history. If he chooses, Westbrook could sign a five-year, $217 million extension come July.
With the NBA’s CBA adjustments, Westbrook and the Thunder are eligible for the Designated Player Veteran Exception (DPE). What is that? Well, for players entering their eighth or ninth season with their original franchise (or if said player was traded to their existing teams in their first four years, ala James Harden).
To be eligible, a player needs to be named to any All-NBA teams or receive a major award, such as Defensive Player of the Year or Most Valuable Player.
Westbrook signed a three-year, $84 million agreement in August. He is able to opt out next season, so it’s imperative for Oklahoma City to lock down Westbrook as soon as possible. If Westbrook would opt out, leaving Oklahoma City, the Thunder would be decimated.
He’s preached loyalty to Oklahoma City for almost a year and it’s going to be if he abides by those words, or if this season has changed his tune.
If Westbrook decides to not re-sign and to opt-out, what does that mean for Oklahoma City? Will the Thunder trade him or let it right out? Only time will tell.We invite you to follow Thunder Digest on Twitter and like Thunder Digest on Facebook. Our Podcast is on iTunes. We also have a Thunder Digest Instagram account if you love fun Thunder photography!