With August almost over, it’s been a little surprising to most fans that Russell Westbrook still has not signed an extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder. It was reported that the superstar would do just that, especially after the team traded for Paul George in an attempt to rise up the ranks in the Western Conference.
Westbrook’s apparent second thoughts on the matter surely make Thunder fans nervous. After all, he is slated to be a free agent in 2018, two years after the team lost Kevin Durant to the Warriors.
Nevertheless, it may all be much ado about nothing. Appearing on the Down to Dunk Podcast, Bleacher Report and Basketball Isndiers’ Eric Pincus reported that Westbrook is still expected to give the team a long-term commitment:
“I’ve heard from someone with the team that they’ve heard from someone that he’s going to take the extension.”
Pincus does note that there are some rumblings that Russ is interested in playing for the Lakers. However, as he notes, that is still unlikely.
Westbrook has made a lot out of being loyal to OKC in the aftermath of the KD decision. Trading for George may have been enough to sell him on the franchise’s ability and desire to build around him despite a reputation as cheap spenders. Whether that will be enough for a long-term commitment remains to be seen.