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Latest Report Suggests Thunder Trading Russell Westbrook is Now Inevitable

OKLAHOMA CITY, OKLAHOMA - APRIL 19: Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder reacts after a made basket against the Portland Trail Blazers during the second half of game three of the Western Conference quarterfinals at Chesapeake Energy Arena on April 19, 2019 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. NOTE TO USER: User expressly acknowledges and agrees that, by downloading and or using this photograph, User is consenting to the terms and conditions of the Getty Images License Agreement.  (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Cooper Neill/Getty Images

When you think of what it means to be "loyal" in the NBA, one of the first players that comes to mind is Russell Westbrook.

The All-NBA point guard has been with the Thunder since the team's first days in Oklahoma City and has seen a lot. He watched his team trade away budding star James Harden to clear cap space. He watched his partner in crime leave the team and join the nemesis Warriors, only to win two rings there. Just the other day, he watched Durant's replacement, Paul George, request a trade and get shipped to Los Angeles.

Now, with nothing but Steven Adams and first-round picks until 3019, it seems he may be on his way out too. Previous reports suggested this, but the latest all but confirms it.

A trade may be the best thing for Westbrook, but there's one looming reason why it will be difficult to move the star.

When an NBA free agent signs, he can't be traded until six months after he puts pen to paper. That means anyone who signed this summer can't be moved until December. Because of team salaries being "frozen," it will he hard to find a team with enough movable cap space to acquire the star until then.

There are some potential suitors, with Miami and Orlando to name two. While it's possible, it's not entirely likely, so expect to see Westbrook dealt midseason rather than this summer.