OKLAHOMA CITY - It appears that Russell Westbrook is staying in Oklahoma City a little bit longer.
ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski first reported on Friday that Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook has agreed to a five-year, $205 million contract extension.
It's the designated player exception that became part of the NBA's collective bargaining agreement in July. The "DPE" allows teams to sign superstar players to extended contracts.
ESPN reports that Westbrook's total contract is the largest in NBA history, worth $233 million over six years.
A short time later, the Oklahoma City Thunder confirmed that Westbrook had signed a multi-year contract extension. However, the terms of the agreement were not released.
“Russell’s commitment to the Thunder organization since its inception in 2008 has helped propel us to great heights and stare down great challenges over our first decade,” said Thunder GM Sam Presti. “We are extremely fortunate to have an athlete, competitor and person such as Russell wear the Thunder uniform. To have him cement his legacy as a leader as we enter into our 10th season in Oklahoma City is extraordinary. I am extremely grateful to Russell, his family and to our ownership for the commitment and support that they have demonstrated in supporting our vision for the Thunder.”
During a news conference earlier this week, Westbrook said a lot has changed in his life in the past few months but that Oklahoma City was the 'place he wanted to be.'
“Just trying to get my family together, honestly. Having a new son can be a little difficult and I’ve been trying to help my wife, help my family, enjoying and embracing that moment as much as I can because I know during the season I’m going to be traveling, moving around so I’ve just been embracing that,” Westbrook said. “This is the place I want to be. I love being here, I love the fans, I love the people here. I’m back now to get a chance to simmer down and get everything situated. And obviously now with a few changes, I’m good. I like where I’m at and where the team is.”
He reiterated that statement after signing the contract extension on Friday.
“I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, there is no place I would rather be than Oklahoma City,” said Westbrook. “I am so honored to have the opportunity to continue my career here with the Thunder. From day one the support that Mr. Bennett, Sam, Troy and the entire organization have given me and my family has been incredible, and we are so grateful. When you play in Oklahoma City you play in front of the best fans in the world, I’m looking forward to bringing everything I’ve got, for them, this city and for this organization. WHY NOT?”
Westbrook had until October 16 to sign the extension, or he would have had to have waited until next summer.
The date he selected to sign the extension may not have been by happenstance- Sept. 29 just happens to be Kevin Durant's birthday.
Either way, it seems like Oklahoma City Thunder fans are simply ready to celebrate.
This past season, Westbrook was named the 2016-2017 Kia NBA Most Valuable Player and went down in the history books.
In April, Westbrook made history when he earned his 42nd triple-double of the season, overtaking Oscar Robertson for the most triple-doubles in a single season.
“Russell represents everything we could have ever hoped for when building a basketball team for Oklahoma City,” said Thunder Chairman Clayton I. Bennett. “His character, integrity and relentless drive have been a great unifier that has deeply and positively affected the spirit of our fans inside our arena, in our classrooms and in our neighborhoods. We recognize and deeply appreciate Russell’s rare and unique abilities as he leads the Oklahoma City Thunder, but also understand his presence and impact on our community will be felt for decades to come. On behalf of the entire Thunder organization, our ownership group and all of Oklahoma, I want to express my deepest appreciation to Russell and I know that the very best days for the Thunder are yet to come.”