Russell Westbrook‘s signature on his NBA-record $205 million dollar contract extension sent shockwaves across the league. The 28-year old reigning MVP essentially will play what many believe will be the prime of his career with the franchise who drafted him in Oklahoma City.
It says a lot about his commitment here and when the time comes it will be easier to make my decision. -Paul George on how Westbrook affects his future
Fellow NBA greats like LeBron James sent their well-wishes to Westbrook through social media.
— LeBron James (@KingJames) September 29, 2017
Nothing hit closer to home than with Westbrook’s own teammates.
It's Litt!!!!!! ???? #WellDeserved
— Andre Roberson (@FlyDre21) September 29, 2017
I think everybody should be happy. For the future he is the cornerstone of this organization. -Carmelo Anthony on Russell Westbrook’s extension
While the extension is exciting for Thunder fans and allows the organization to breathe a sigh of relief, the ripple effects from Westbrook’s signature could have something to say about keeping the current big three intact.
Paul George has only been Westbrook’s partner for almost three months and he spoke after practice on Saturday how the point guard’s commitment to Oklahoma City will affect his own future.
“Absolutely,” George said when asked if Westbrook’s extension would be a factor in his future with the Thunder. “It says a lot about his commitment here and when the time comes it will be easier to make my decision.”
Surprisingly, George admitted he found out about the news on NBA TV.
Carmelo Anthony was extremely candid during his reaction to the extension.
“I was happy,” Anthony said. “I think everybody should be happy. For the future he is the cornerstone of this organization.”
Anthony has had plenty of experience with the business side of the league. His time in New York was littered with contractual language and headlines. His response to how players taking care of the business aspect of basketball and reliving the pressure that comes with it was enlightening.
“That burden is off,” Anthony said. “Although we try not to think about it, we think about it. It’s something that we have to keep in the back of our minds, our future. I’m pretty sure he is happy to focus only on basketball.”
“Also, not have to answer the questions,” Anthony said with a smile. “He won’t have to answer those questions anymore.”
Westbrook is expected to be available Sunday prior to the Blue/White scrimmage for the first time since the signing. He continues to be held out of practice due to the PRP injection he received late in the offseason although Billy Donovan said as of Saturday he began to do non-contact drills.
He is not expected to participate in the scrimmage.
Here is the video excerpt of the question I asked to Anthony.
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