It was a great run for Russell Westbrook in Oklahoma City.
After being drafted as the fourth-overall pick in 2008 by the then-Seattle SuperSonics, Westbrook spent his entire career in Oklahoma City after the team moved before his first official year.
Westbrook won the MVP in 2017, averaged a triple-double each of his last two years and made eight All-Star teams.
He has good memories with the organization and he penned a heartfelt goodbye on Instagram on Friday.
“I can’t even begin to put into words all of the emotions I have right now,” he wrote. “It’s been one heck of a journey Oklahoma! When I came here, I was 18 years old, bright eyed, and completely unaware of all the amazing things that would soon take place.
“I grew up in Oklahoma with an amazing bunch of people. The people here are what makes this place so special. From the fans, my coaches, my teammates, the entire Thunder organization, Mr. Bennett, Sam Presti, my friends, and everyone in the entire community. You are all what makes Oklahoma such a beautiful place, and the reason I’ve loved playing here all of this time.
“You have supported me through all of the ups and the downs, and stood by me through the good times, and tough times. For that I am eternally grateful to you. I’ve met so many amazing people who have helped shape me into the man that I am today.
“I hope I have impacted the Oklahoma community as much as Oklahoma has made an impact on me and my family. I’m leaving Oklahoma with so many friends and so much gratitude. I could never thank you all enough for sticking with me. It’s been a dream and a whirlwind. #WHYNOT.”
Westbrook was traded by the Thunder to the Rockets on Thursday in a package for Chris Paul.
He rejoins former teammate James Harden in Houston after the two played the 2009 to 2012 seasons together in Oklahoma City.