OKLAHOMA CITY, OK - MAY 28: Russell Westbrook #0 of the Oklahoma City Thunder handles the ball during the first half against the Golden State Warriors in game six of the Western Conference Finals during the 2016 NBA Playoffs at Chesapeake Energy Arena on May 28, 2016 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 Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

Following KD's departure, Russell Westbrook's next move could be shocking

This could turn out well for the Thunder.

The Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook era in Oklahoma City is over, but that doesn't necessarily mean Westbrook is gone next year when he becomes a free agent. While there are some reports that indicate Westbrook was actually the reason Durant left the Thunder, he was one of the people urging him the hardest to stay and continue to build a potential dynasty.

RELATED: Report: 'No chance' Westbrook renegotiates deal

According to ESPN, Westbrook "largely led the charge" at that dinner, trying to convince Durant that the Thunder were on the verge of something special. And he's not wrong. They had beaten the San Antonio Spurs with LaMarcus Aldridge and had taken the 73-win Warriors to the edge in their conference finals series.

ESPN's Royce Young wrote a feature on the end of the Durant era and there is more information on Westbrook's role in all of the aftermath:

Now, with Westbrook's free agency now less than a year away, the Thunder are looking at the harsh reality of being burned to the ground by the cruel world of professional sports. They say they're going to take their time to evaluate their options from here, but their first move is trying to hand the keys of the franchise into Westbrook's hands, to hope that he'll commit to a long-term deal. If not, if he wants to test the free agency waters like Durant did, they'll be forced to consider trading him.

This was always about Durant being persuaded. The impulse decisions, like proposing to girlfriend Monica Wright on a night he was just "feeling it" in 2013, or when he signed that extension in 2010 and later came to regret it, made it a danger.

But he was the franchise, and they were willing to take the risk. Westbrook, though, they feel differently about. One source said in February that Durant leaving would only make Westbrook more resolute to stay.

RELATED: KD's decision to leave OKC reportedly came down to one person

Westbrook will certainly have his options next year when he becomes a free agent and there will be plenty of teams positioning themselves this year in hopes of landing him next summer, but he may not be willing to leave OKC. Westbrook may feel more inclined to stay to show that he can be a loyal player and he'll stay that way to the city and its fans. There's one thing for certain and that's not to make predictions about decisions that are a year away as anything can happen between now and then.