Where do the Thunder go from here? Can they be West contenders again? Kevin Pelton breaks down the importance of the Russell Westbrook deal.
Westbrook, 27, will sign the contract on Thursday in Oklahoma City, sources said.
Talks between the sides centered on the addition of two more years to Westbrook's current deal, which expires after the 2016-17 season. The new deal calls for an $8.7 million increase in Westbrook's salary for this season, from $17.8 million to the maximum $26.5 million. He would then earn the max the next two seasons.
Only one of those two seasons is guaranteed, though.
Westbrook, who has played all eight seasons of his career in Oklahoma City, will have a player option for the third season of the deal that would allow him to capitalize on the league rule allowing players who have completed 10 seasons to earn a larger max salary.
In the wake of former MVP Kevin Durant signing with the Golden State Warriors, the Thunder made locking up Westbrook to a long-term deal their primary offseason objective. Oklahoma City removed its qualifying offer to restricted free agent Dion Waiters to free up cap space to offer Westbrook a max extension. Waiters agreed to a deal with the Miami Heat last month.
Westbrook had a season for the ages in 2015-16, tying Magic Johnson for the most triple-doubles in the past 50 years with a league-high 18, including six in the month of March.
A five-time All-Star and two-time All-Star Game MVP, Westbrook averaged 23.5 points, 7.8 rebounds and 10.4 assists last season and finished fourth in the MVP voting.