I hope for Jalen Rose‘s sake that he doesn’t have to travel to Oklahoma City in the near future as the former NBA player turned ESPN analyst recently appeared on Grantland’s NBA preview series and dropped a few bombshells, namely regarding the future of the Thunder.
Rose, who is plugged into the league and has at times hinted at some strange things happening that did indeed take place predicted that Kevin Durant will eventually leave the Thunder and join the Houston Rockets while Russell Westbrook will team up with former UCLA blood Kevin Love and become the new star-tandem for the Los Angeles Lakers.
It’s a pretty out there prediction, as was his earlier suggestion that Michael Jordan would return to the hardwood for one game this season. But is it even possible?
While it’s difficult to know what team payrolls will look like in the future, what we do know is that Durant will be a free agent after the 2015-16 season. Houston will have two players under contract come the 2016 offseason, Dwight Howard and James Harden who are both worth a committed $40 million dollars. Howard does have an opt-out clause, so he could re-sign for less money if he desired, but we’re getting ahead of ourselves here.
Meanwhile, Westbrook is under contract through the 2016-17 season while Kevin Love can become a free agent after the 2014-15 season or can play out his final year and become a free agent after 2015-16, a year ahead of Westbrook. The Lakers meanwhile have zero dollars on the books past 2015-16 as of now, so while it’s technically possible it would take a lot of maneuvers and things to properly align for this scenario to unfold.