Russell Westbrook agrees to new contract with Oklahoma City Thunder

It’s been a tough few years for Oklahoma City Thunder fans, as their once championship calibre team has slowly been bled of top talent. Stars Kevin Durant, Dion Waters, and Serge Ibaka have all left, and losing Russell Westbrook would have been a clear sign Oklahoma City no longer intended to compete.

Westbrook stays in Oklahoma City

While fans were worried for a while, there is a sense of relief in Oklahoma City after ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reported that Russell Westbrook has agreed to an $85.7 million contract covering three years. Westbrook will receive $26.5 million next year, $28.5 million in 2017-2018, while the third year will be a player option. He could receive over $30 million in the third year.

Westbrook more integral than ever with Kevin Durant gone

Last season, Westbrook averaged 23.5 points per game, to go along with 7.8 rebounds and 10.4 assists.

As reported by ESPN Stats & Information, Westbrook is well worth the increased investment:

“Last season, Westbrook became the fourth player in NBA history to average at least 20 points, 10 assists and 5 rebounds, joining Oscar Robertson (five times), Magic Johnson (three times) and Chris Paul (once).

Westbrook was second in the NBA last season in points responsible for (46.3), trailing only Harden (46.8). He has ranked first or second in the NBA in fast-break points per game in each of the last four seasons.”

Without Kevin Durant, 2008 NBA Rookie of the Year and 2014 MVP, and his 28.5 points per game, a much heavier burden now rests on Russell Westbrook’s shoulders.

WATCH: No love lost between Westbrook and Durant

Posted by Aijalon O SoGmfe on Thursday, July 28, 2016

The Oklahoma City Thunder still have a ways to go in reclaiming their top-tier status, but signing Westbrook to a contract extension is a step in the right direction.

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