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Russell Westbrook signs record 5-year, $205M deal with Thunder

Published: Saturday, September 30, 2017 @ 12:33 AM

Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder won the NBA's Most Valuable Player AWard last season.
Steven Freeman/NBAE/Getty Images
Russell Westbrook of the Oklahoma City Thunder won the NBA's Most Valuable Player AWard last season.(Steven Freeman/NBAE/Getty Images)

Russell Westbrook signed the richest contract in NBA history on Friday, agreeing to a five-year, $205 million extension from the Oklahoma City Thunder, ESPN reported.

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Westbrook had until Oct. 16 to extend his existing contract, which had one season and a player option remaining. 

“I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again, there is no place I would rather be than Oklahoma City,” the 6-foot-3, 200-pound forward said. “I am so honored to have the opportunity to continue my career here with the Thunder.”

Westbrook signed an extension last summer with the Thunder and responded by averaging a triple-double during the 2016-2017 season -- 31.6 point, 10.3 rebounds and 10.4 assists. He was named the NBA’s Most Valuable Player for 2016-2017.

WATCH: Seahawks' Quinton Jefferson tries to climb into stands after fans throw concessions

Published: Monday, December 11, 2017 @ 5:48 AM

Members of the Seattle Seahawks staff escort Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson (99) from the field after he got into a shouting match with fans, when objects were thrown at him, in the closing moments of an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. Jacksonville won 30-24.(AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)
Stephen B. Morton/AP
Members of the Seattle Seahawks staff escort Seattle Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson (99) from the field after he got into a shouting match with fans, when objects were thrown at him, in the closing moments of an NFL football game against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Sunday, Dec. 10, 2017, in Jacksonville, Fla. Jacksonville won 30-24.(AP Photo/Stephen B. Morton)(Stephen B. Morton/AP)

After being ejected in Sundays 30-24 loss against the Jacksonville Jaguars, Seahawks defensive tackle Quinton Jefferson jogged toward the tunnel leading to the visiting locker room. 

>> WATCH: Injured Ryan Shazier celebrates Steelers' AFC North win from hospital

Then Jefferson abruptly stopped and took off his helmet after it appeared a drink was thrown at him by a fan in the stands. 

Jefferson moved toward the stands and began yelling when more fans threw concessions at him. 

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Seahawks staffers held Jefferson back as he tried to climb into the stands before he ultimately walked away into the locker room. 

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Asked about Jefferson after the game, head coach Pete Carroll said, "I don't even know what happened. ... He just kind of lost it." 

Carroll went on to say, "It's really unfortunate how it ended. We had a chance to get the ball back. We have to be more poised than that." 

Defensive tackle Sheldon Richardson also was ejected late in the fourth quarter after officials said he threw a punch at a member of the Jaguars. 

The (8-5) Seahawks return home to CenturyLink Field next Sunday to face the NFC West-leading (9-4) Los Angeles Rams. 

WATCH: Injured Ryan Shazier celebrates Steelers' AFC North win from hospital

Published: Monday, December 11, 2017 @ 3:28 AM

The helmet of Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier (50) sits on the field after an NFL football game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens in Pittsburgh, Monday, Dec. 11, 2017. Shazier suffered a spinal cord injury in last week's game and is recovering from surgery to stabilize his spine. The Steelers beat the Baltimore Ravens 39-38 to capture the AFC North Championship. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)
Keith Srakocic/AP
The helmet of Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier (50) sits on the field after an NFL football game between the Pittsburgh Steelers and the Baltimore Ravens in Pittsburgh, Monday, Dec. 11, 2017. Shazier suffered a spinal cord injury in last week's game and is recovering from surgery to stabilize his spine. The Steelers beat the Baltimore Ravens 39-38 to capture the AFC North Championship. (AP Photo/Keith Srakocic)(Keith Srakocic/AP)

The Pittsburgh Steelers' Ryan Shazier has been hospitalized for nearly a week after a hit left him with a spine injury in a Monday night game against the Bengals.

>> PREVIOUS STORY: Steelers' Ryan Shazier strapped to board, taken to hospital after scary hit

The team and fans have rallied around the young star linebacker, but other than a tweet and social media comments from family members, he hasn't made any public comments since he was carted off the field in Cincinnati.

That changed Sunday night.

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After the Steelers clinched an AFC North title in a thrilling 39-38 victory over the rival Baltimore Ravens, Shazier FaceTimed with his teammates congratulating them on the victory. That moment was caught on social media.

>> See the post here

Teammates said Shazier has been in good spirits despite the injury, and honored him in a number of ways before and during the game.

It looks like he was in even better spirits after it.

Steelers' Ryan Shazier strapped to board, taken to hospital after scary hit

Published: Tuesday, December 05, 2017 @ 5:34 AM

Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier, in yellow, is carted off the field after an injury in the first half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)
Frank Victores/AP
Pittsburgh Steelers inside linebacker Ryan Shazier, in yellow, is carted off the field after an injury in the first half of an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Monday, Dec. 4, 2017, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Frank Victores)(Frank Victores/AP)

Pittsburgh Steelers star linebacker Ryan Shazier was carted off the field and taken to a hospital early in Monday night’s game after making a scary hit.

>> Watch the clip here

>> Head to WPXI.com for the latest on this developing story

Shazier went in to make a tackle, striking Cincinnati receiver Josh Malone with the crown of his helmet and immediately appearing to go limp as he fell to the ground facedown.

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According to Steelers General Manager Kevin Colbert, Shazier suffered a back injury and was taken to the University Medical Center. He had a CT Scan and an MRI to evaluate his condition.

He said Shazier will not require surgery and continues to improve.

He will stay overnight and will hopefully return to Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Shazier reached around to his lower back as he rolled over.

Medical personnel strapped Shazier to a backboard and placed him on a cart. He held his hands to his face as he was taken off the field.

There was no immediate word about the extent of his injury. The team said his status was "unavailable."

WPXI's Chase Williams later reported Shazier was taken from the stadium to a nearby hospital with a back injury.

Shazier was the Steelers' first overall pick in 2014 out of Ohio State University. He made his first Pro Bowl last season.

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Concussion expert irate when Texans’ QB returns after hard hit

Published: Sunday, December 10, 2017 @ 3:58 PM

Tom Savage of the Houston Texans is hit by Elvis Dumervil of the San Francisco 49ers during the second quarter .
Tim Warner/Getty Images
Tom Savage of the Houston Texans is hit by Elvis Dumervil of the San Francisco 49ers during the second quarter .(Tim Warner/Getty Images)

Hard hits are not unusual in the NFL, but the one Houston Texans quarterback Tom Savage took Sunday against the San Francisco 49ers was particularly scary. When Savage returned to the game moments later, it drew an angry response from the founding CEO of Concussion Legacy Foundation on Twitter.

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Savage was hit by 49ers defensive end Elvis Dumervil as he threw an incomplete pass on third down, ESPN reported. The quarterback had trouble getting up and his hands were shaking.

After being evaluated by the Texans’ medical staff, Savage returned to the game three minutes later and threw two incomplete passes before being replaced by T.J. Yates with two minutes left in the half.

Chris Nowinski, a former professional wrestler with the WWE and author of “Head Games: Football’s Concussion Crisis,” tweeted that he was “disgusted” by Savage’s return to action.

“I would not let my worst enemy go through the 2017 #NFL sideline concussion protocol,” tweeted Nowinski, who is co-director of Boston University’s Center for the Study of Traumatic Encephalopathy.

After taking the hit, Savage spoke with the Texans’ medical staff, ESPN reported. Before the Texans' next offensive series, a team official held Savage's jersey and arm as he tried to return to the field. Savage argued with the team official; after coming off the field a second time, Savage was escorted to the locker room by the team's trainer.

The Texans ruled Savage out with a concussion, ESPN reported.