Thank you, Russell Westbrook; a trip down memory lane

Russell Westbrook of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images)
Russell Westbrook of the OKC Thunder (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /
15 of 16
Russell Westbrook
Russell Westbrook, OKC Thunder, Kawhi Leonard Toronto Raptors (Photo by Zach Beeker/NBAE via Getty Images) /

In the NBA, everyone is a Free Agent, all the time.

As the NBA world waited on Kawhi Leonard’s decision, Oklahoma City Fans were gearing themselves for the team to run it back again. To try again. The team thought that too, signing Alec Burks and Mike Muscala in free agency, good veterans to complement their star pairing. Not a move a rebuilding team makes…unless you are the Knicks.

Thunder fans just hoped the reigning NBA Finals MVP did not pick the Lakers and form another three-headed monster of all-NBA players, future Hall of Famers, and MVP level players.

Kawhi did not pick the Lakers, but he did pick L.A. Paul George’s home town. Kawhi signed with the Clippers. That news broke at 12:54 AM on July 6th. The NBA world went into a frenzy.

At 12:55 AM, Woj sent out another bombshell to drop on the NBA world that was already in a panic. This one, the most stunning of them all. We knew the three teams who were in the running for Kawhi, we did not know Paul George was available.

The Thunder traded Paul George to the Clippers allowing the two of them to team up in L.A.

The aftershock of this move was felt by all of Oklahoma City. The team was heading for a rebuild, but the question that night was with or without Russell Westbrook?

We found out Russell Westbrook is welcome to the idea of being traded, and that is when it finally sunk in. The first era of Thunder basketball was officially over. The team tried to make-shift rebuild in the aftermath of Kevin Durant, departure, but now for the first time during their tenure in Oklahoma City, it was time to fully rebuild.