NBA rumors: Thunder open to trading Russell Westbrook; Heat interested

NBA rumors: Thunder open to trading Russell Westbrook; Heat interested

We've seen unprecedented movement of current and former All-Stars this offseason as NBA teams try to gear up to dethrone the Warriors. So, what's one more name added to the list?

According to a new report, Russell Westbrook could join a sizeable group of prominent players to change teams this summer, including the likes of Kawhi Leonard, Paul George, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Anthony Davis, Kemba Walker and D'Angelo Russell.

In the aftermath of the trade that sent George to the Clippers for a massive haul of draft picks, the Oklahoma City Thunder reportedly have begun considering the possibility of trading Westbrook as well, according to The Athletic's Shams Charania.

Currently 30 years old, Westbrook has four years and $170 million remaining on his contract, which makes any trade for the former MVP a complex one. However, he's coming off three consecutive seasons in which he's averaged a triple-double, and that abundance of talent has at least one team reportedly interested.

According to ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski, there is mutual interest between Westbrook and the Miami Heat.

Heat president Pat Riley has long been known as a big-game hunter throughout his tenure as a league executive, and he already added another pelt to his wall this offseason in orchestrating a sign-and-trade for Jimmy Butler. If the Heat were able to acquire Westbrook as well, that would give them one of the top duos in all of the NBA.

Sending Westbrook to the Heat would also get another star out of the loaded Western Conference, which would help the Warriors' playoff hopes. While many teams are loading up in hopes of taking Golden State off its five-year perch at the top of the Western Conference, Oklahoma City would be one of the few teams in the West that would hit the reset button instead.

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Miami's cupboards aren't exactly overflowing with assets at the moment, however, so it's not immediately apparent what the Heat would send the other way in a potential trade for Westbrook. Still, given the extreme shift in trajectory and expectations in Oklahoma City, it seems unlikely that Westbrook will be reinvigorated to remain there anytime soon.

Watch NBA rookies try to guess Warriors guard Jordan Poole's nickname

Watch NBA rookies try to guess Warriors guard Jordan Poole's nickname

The best part of any of the sports reference websites is when you discover the nicknames of athletes, and whether the height listed is accurate.

But some might not even be aware of these nicknames, even Ty Jerome was unaware he's been dubbed as "Milk."

NBA TV had some fun quizzing rookies and their classmates about the nicknames Basketball Reference had listed on the website. And it went about as you would expect it to be:

Warriors rookie Jordan Poole's "Microwave" nickname was guessed rather easily.

The microwave nickname came when he was asked if he knew who the original "Microwave," Vinne Johnson was. He was young and didn't quite know who he was, but it ended up sticking. 

Plus, the fact that he scores fast and "heats up" quickly adds to the comparison.

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He likes it, even suggesting "The Microwave Part II."

If you don't know, now you know. 

Warriors were ready to boycott game after Donald Sterling audio release


Warriors were ready to boycott game after Donald Sterling audio release

The 2014 NBA playoffs saw Adam Silver handling his toughest test as NBA commissioner just a few months into the job.

TMZ published a phone recording of Clippers owner Donald Sterling going on a racist rant to his mistress V. Stiviano. Sterling had been a black stain on the NBA for his entire history as Clippers owner, but the recording put Silver on the clock.

The players wanted Sterling thrown out of the league for good post-haste. 

While the Sterling tape was dominating the headlines, the Clippers and Warriors were locked in a hotly contested first-round playoff series. Ahead of Game 5 at Staples Center, Warriors general manager Bob Myers called team president Rick Welts to tell him the players were prepared to make a stand if Silver's punishment wasn't up to snuff. 

"'These guys are going to walk off the floor,'" Welts recalled to ESPN's Ramona Shelburne. "He was with the team that morning and said the vibe around the team -- maybe both teams -- was that if this doesn't go the way the players want it to go that they could walk out on the floor and then walk right off and not play the game that night."

Former Warriors forward Andre Iguodala was more than ready to take a stand if Silver lacked the conviction to do what was necessary.

"I was all-in. Like shut down the whole season," Iguodala said. "Maybe that was too far, but as far as that game that day, you can reschedule it, you gotta sort this thing out, because there's some deep-rooted stuff with him that had to be addressed."

Draymond Green told NBC Sports Bay Area's Logan Murdock that the boycott was a full-go. 

"I remember everybody talking like if Adam Silver don't come down with a tough enough post and we don't think it's right, we're not playing tonight," Green said.

Had the Clippers and Warriors elected not to play Game 5, it's a moment that would have gone down as one of the most important and momentous acts in sports history and in the overall arc of the fight for social justice and equality in America.

"If we didn't play," former Clipper Jamal Crawford said, "I think that honestly it would have outlived us. They would be talking about that while we're not here anymore.

"It's never happened. At that magnitude, at that level."

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The stand, as you know, was not needed.

Silver stood in front of the world and banned Sterling from the NBA for life, leading to him selling the team to Steve Ballmer.

The Clippers went on to win the series in seven games.