Russell Westbrook isn’t a sales expert, so he’s going to let the Oklahoma City Thunder’s actions do the talking when it comes time to convince Paul George to stay with the franchise. On Wednesday, he explained the strategy.
Winning a title is 100 percent the best way to ensure someone stays with an organization for at least one more season. Westbrook acknowledges that. He’s not one to say much to the media, but that small sound bite spoke loud enough. However, there is one big issue with Westbrook’s plan — it’s highly unlikely the Thunder win the title this summer.
At 20-17, Oklahoma is fifth overall in the conference but have had their share of ups and downs. Currently, they’re on a two-game losing streak after rattling off six-straight wins. Earlier in the season, their record was 8-12 and there wasn’t much speculation about George staying with the team.
His trade from the Indiana Pacers was the result of him being transparent about his plans. He did not see himself returning when he became eligible for free agency. The likely destination in the summer was the Los Angeles Lakers, but the Pacers sent him to Oklahoma City for Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis.
George is averaging 20.6 points, 5.5 rebounds and leads the league with 2.4 steals per game. He’s also shooting 43 percent from three-point land.