Oklahoma City Thunder agreed on the blockbuster trade that will send Russell Westbrook to Houston Rockets, where he will reunite with James Harden.
Rockets will send Chris Paul, two protected first rounds (2024 and 2026, secure numbers 1-4) and two replacement parts (2021 and 2025) of Thunder, sources of the league, ESPN said.
Rockets unite two former MVP guards who started their career with Thunder. It was a deal that Harden and Westbrook were enthusiastic about.
Thunderstorm General Manager Sam Presti was working with Westbrook and his agent, Thad Fusher, to honor the Star's watchman's hopes of playing with Rockets, the sources of the league said. Thunder also discussed a possible deal with Miami Heat, sources said.
Presti is already working with Paul's agents at CAA Sports – Leon Rose and Stephen Hayman – to redirect Paul to a new team. The heat is radiating in the talks, but other opportunities are being explored, sources said. Presti and Rose worked together last year in a similar situation with Carmelo Anthony.
|Year One Year|
|2020: 2 (own, DEN)|
|2021: 2 (own MoI, can exchange w / HOU)|
|2022: 2 (own; LAC)|
|2023: 2 (own MoI; can exchange w / LAC)|
|2024: 3 (own; LAC; HOU)|
|2025: 1 (own, can be exchanged with LAC / HOU)|
|2026: 3 (own; LAC; HOU)|
|– Some photos can not be transmitted|
due to protection
In making the deal, Rockets believes the age difference between Paul and Westbrook (30) gives them a better chance of expanding Harden's championship window, which will end 30 next month.
"We are delighted to have Russell Westbrook," said Talkman Ferrita, owner of Rockets, who said he would play for Oklahoma City and he is so athletic. At the same time, this franchise had only two years with the most. he won it in successive years and we would not have done it without Chris Paul. Chris Paul is incredible, and he will be sadly missed.
Oklahoma City has picked eight choices from the first round after a draft NBA on June 20, creating a long game unheard of in the history of the NBA. With the opportunity for Oklahoma City to keep its own peak for 2020 (top-20 protected to Philadelphia) and 2022 pickup (Atlanta swept lottery) Thunder may have 15 first round and change its rights in four different seasons between 2020 and 2026,
Paul, a nine-time All-Star, has three years left $ 124 million on his contract – one year less than Westbrook would have in OKC's books. If Thunder retains Paul, they will have a representative who is currently in the center Stephen Adams and striker Danilo Galinari.
If Oklahoma City wanted to stimulate the trade for Paul, Thunder could use some of his huge pool to ease the deal. Paul has a certain positive story with Oklahoma City after playing with Hornets, starting from 2005-06, when Hurricane Katrina forced the franchise to move temporarily.
Caesars Sportsbook moved Rockets' chances of winning the 2019-20 NBA title from 10-1 to 7-1 after Los Angeles Lakers (7-2), LA Clippers (4-1) and Milwaukee Bucks (9-2) ). ).
"I said at the end of the year," We will never be sunk, "said Fertita," We will always try to be better. I think this makes us a better team. I hate to lose Chris Paul, but we felt we had done what we had to do to become a better team.
"I think it's going to be very interesting and fun, James and Russell wanted to play together, and it was supposed to be fun this year."
Westbrook and Harden will be the fourth teammate to play together after winning a MVP award over the previous three seasons, according to a study by Elias Sports Bureau.
Westbrook has four years and $ 171 million left on his contract, and the player's option in the last year of his deal has paid $ 47 million if he gets involved.
After Paul George's trade with Clippers, Westbrook and Fushner worked with Thunder to find a nice way forward for the future of Westbrook. With the effective closure of the freelance agency and the list of Westbrook's favorite destinations, the extremely brief moment makes trade negotiations complicated.
Still, Thunder wanted to comply with Westbrook's wishes as much as possible, with the first and greatest desire to meet Harden in Houston, while finding a trade that is consistent with the recovery goal of the CBA.
Brian Winthorst, Tim McMahon and Roy Young are discussing the dramatic trade that Russell Westbrook sent to Houston for Chris Paul. Listen now!
Headed in fourth place by Thunder (then Seattle SuperSonix) in 2008, Westbrook remains the leader in all times of the franchise at points (18,859); second in assists (6,897); third in rebounds (5760) and steals (1,442); and fourth in the played games (821). In the era of Oklahoma City Westbrook is the first.
Westbrook won the MVP in 2016-17, making the NBA history as the first player after Oscar Robertson in 1962 to an average of three times. He broke Robertson's mark from a triple doubling for a season of 42, then continued with an average of three times double in two more seasons. Westbrook qualified for the second time with Magic Johnson on 138 career triple pairs, behind only Robertson (181).
Westbrook is one of the 10 NBA players to record 15,000 points, 5000 rebounds and 5,000 assists with one franchise, seven of which are in the Hall of Fame. The other two are Kobe Bryant and Lebron James.
Since Westbrook was prepared by OKC, only Spurs (613) and Rockets (541) have more Thunder victories (538). Westbrook is part of Thunder's historic match as the only NBA history team to pick three consecutive future MVPs (Kevin Durant, Westbrook and Harden). From Westbrook's debut, Thunder is the only team that has three different players who finish in MVP's three biggest voices (Durant, Westbrook and George). CCP has 16 choices from all NBAs since 2009, most in the NBA.
The thunderbolts made the playoffs in each of the three seasons of Westbrook and Harden, moving from 8-seed in 2009-10 to No. 4 in 2010-11 to number 2 in 2011-12. They reached the NBA finals in their last season, losing in five games before Miami Oklahoma City trades Harden with Houston in October.
Westbrook will forever be linked to Thunder as a franchisee by promising loyalty to the organization after Durant leaves Golden State Warriors in 2016. Westbrook is recovering with OKC, stabilizing the list and paving the way forward, and then signing a five-year extension over 2017, at that time the largest contract in the history of the NBA.
This report uses information from Ramona Shelburne on ESPN.