A Most Valuable Payday

Russell Westbrook has gotten a pay day like no other. The reigning MVP agreed to a 5 year contract extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder worth the record breaking amount of $205M, first reported by Woj of ESPN. This contract is perfection for both sides, as Westbrook gets the money that his play deserves and OKC gets to actually keep a star loyal (looking at you KD).
Russell Westbrook deserves this contract more than anyone in this league. He is one of the few stars anymore to stay loyal to their city. Brodie, as he is known, was drafted 4th overall in the 2008 NBA Draft by the then Seattle Supersonics. In his rookie season, Westbrook averaged 15.3 PTS and 5.3 AST while playing along a young Kevin Durant. In the 2011-2012 season, Durant and Westbrook teamed up to bring Oklahoma City all the way to the NBA Finals, to eventually lose to Lebron James and the Heat. In this season, Brodie averaged 23.6 PTS. What the league was seeing was one of the best duos to form in the league possibly ever. Durant and Westbrook who were joined at one time by 2017 MVP runner-up James Harden looked destined to win a championship for the city of Oklahoma City.
In the 2014-2015 season, Westbrook was the league’s leader in points for the first time averaging 28.1 PTS. This season is where he made his step from All Star to Superstar. This was the first season, however, Oklahoma City didn’t make the playoffs in years, as Durant missed most of the season and the rest of the team wasn’t able to really match Durant’s workload. In the following season, Westbrook exploded, even into MVP talks where he felt like could have beaten out Steph Curry for the honor. Westbrook averaged 23.5 PTS, 10.4 AST, and 7.8 REB. Him and Durant were able to lead the Thunder all the way to the Western Conference Finals where they were able to get a 3-1 lead on the Golden State Warriors. Eventually, the skill of the entire Warrior squad would lead to a comeback and a 4-3 loss for the Thunder team.
In that offseason, it felt as if the Thunder were one more player away from overthrowing the Warriors, as Westbrook was a MVP runner-up and Durant was finally back to his MVP form. But, what happened instead was Kevin Durant leaving OKC to join those Warriors that they had just lost two. In that, Westbrook had one of the most impressive seasons ever. Russell Westbrook registered 43 Triple-Doubles, breaking a record once held by Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson. He was able to become the second player ever top average a Triple Double, with a league leading 31.6 PPG, 10.4 AST, and 10.7 REB. To add on to that, an Most Valuable Player award that he more than anyone deserved.
Brodie was able to stay with OKC through the noise of Durant leaving, and he went on to put up a historic season that may never be repeated. By going through the noise and a tough season to even try and make the playoffs with such a difficult roster. The front office paid up, being able to acquire All Stars Paul George and Carmelo Anthony. With these moves, Westbrook will have his best chance without Durant to win a championship. And today, 9-29-17, the day of Kevin Durant’s 29th birthday, Russell Westbrook becomes the highest paid player to ever step foot on a basketball court. As we come into this new season, Westbrook now gets a chance to meet Kevin Durant in the playoffs, with Durant on a super team and anyone to matchup with them will be viewed as a underdog, which Brodie will embrace and try to shock the world with his fellow star teammates.
Russell Westbrook is going into the 2017-2018 season as one of the best players in the world, on one of the best teams in the league, and now… the highest paid player ever. Excite the world Brodie, prove them wrong, and take out the super team. Truly worthy of having this Most Valuable Payday.
– Scott Edwards, Creator of WTF Sports

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