Russell Westbrook never considered waiting for what options he might have had other than returning to the Oklahoma City Thunder.
The All-Star point guard, who helped the Thunder to the Western Conference finals last season, was more than happy with the only place he’s called home in the NBA.
Westbrook signed a five-year, $80 million contract extension and returned to Oklahoma City for the first time Sunday for a news conference.
Westbrook says he wanted to be somewhere he felt wanted, and Oklahoma City has supported him since General Manager Sam Presti made him a surprising No. 4 pick in the 2008 draft.
Since then, Westbrook has developed into one of the league’s most dynamic point guards while making his team a title contender.
He could have waited until his current deal expired and then tested the free-agent market, forcing Oklahoma City to match any offer from another team. Westbrook hopes his decision to make a long-term commitment to stay will do away with rumors of a rift between him and fellow All-Star Kevin Durant.
“I wish it would have never started,” Westbrook said Sunday at a news conference to announce his contract extension.
“Me and Kevin get along great on and off the floor, and now we’re going to be together for at least five more years. Hopefully, we can stay together.”
With the end of his rookie contract approaching at the conclusion of this season, he said he saw no reason to look anywhere but Oklahoma City.
“Why wouldn’t you want to play with the best scorer who might be the best player in the league on your team?” Westbrook asked. .
Celtics’ Allen injured
Boston Celtics guard Ray Allen left Sunday’s game against the Washington Wizards because of a jammed left ankle and did not return.
Allen was fouled by Jan Vesely with about 6› minutes left in the second quarter. He was slow to get up off the floor after the foul and limped to the bench. Allen had seven points on 3-for-5 shooting against the Wizards.
The Celtics were already without starting point guard Rajon Rondo, who missed his second game with a sprained right wrist. Coach Doc Rivers said Rondo is close to returning.