The Athletic’s NBA insider Shams Charania re-emphasized this point recently when reporting both parties want to stay married to each other and that it’ll take more than a first-round pick for the Thunder to consider otherwise.
“They could trade him today for a first-round pick but they’ve held on to him. They signed him to a long-term deal. Just the vision to sign him, initially on a deal and now for the long term. Those are the type of guys you want to build with. When this team wins big, Kenrich Williams is going to be a big part of it.”
This past offseason, the Thunder signed Williams to a four-year, $27.2 million extension that kicks in next season.
Considering Williams is on the record with his desire to retire in Oklahoma City, this isn’t too surprising or anything new. With the Thunder already in the playoff race, the next contention window could open sooner than most anticipated — if it hasn’t already.