With Kevin Durant deciding to not chase a ring in Oklahoma City and go after his first championship in Golden State instead, not many people have a lot of faith that the Thunder will be able to replicate their 2015-16 success and make another deep playoff run.
It seems OKC’s Russell Westbrook isn’t a fan of the negativity.
Last season, Westbrook finished fourth in MVP voting (then-teammate Durant was fifth), behind the first unanimous winner Steph Curry, Spurs’ Kawhi Leonard, and eventual NBA Champion LeBron James. When you look at Westbrook’s stats, however, you would think he would be closer to Curry in the voting.
In 2015-16, Westbrook finished with 18 triple-doubles – the most in a season by any player since the great Magic Johnson notched 17 in 1988-89. What’s even crazier is that the Thunder have won every game when Westbrook has accomplished the feat. He also finished eighth in scoring with 23.5 points, second in assists with 10.4 per game, and fifth in steals averaging 2.04 per game.
Westbrook’s got the numbers, Billy Donovan will look to improve on the Thunders’ 55-27 record in his second season at the helm, and OKC doesn’t seem too concerned about losing Durant, Serge Ibaka, or Dion Waiters from the roster.
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And if you needed more proof that Westbrook is feeling pretty good about Oklahoma City this season, beyond signing a three-year contract extension with the Thunder, look no further than what he did in an exhibition game in Spain.