Local economies might be more excited than the players that the NBA is back. ABC news reported that “….according to the Greater Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, each Oklahoma City Thunder game brings $1.3 million to the local economy.
USA Today takes a look at who might benefit from a shorten season. (Veteran teams) are better suited to pick up where they left off. An exception might be the Oklahoma City Thunder, a young squad that gained valuable experience by reaching the the Western Conference finals last season. In the 50-game season that followed the 1998-99 lockout, two veteran teams, the San Antonio Spurs and New York Knicks, made the NBA Finals.
Thunder are 5-1 odds to win it all. Jay Rood, the race and sports director at the MGM Mirage puts the Thunder at 5-to-1 odds to win the title this year. Rood has Miami as the favorite at 2-to-1 with the Los Angeles Lakers second a 9-to-2 and the Thunder and Chicago Bulls tied for third at 5-to-1.
Mayberry is back (thankfully!) and isn’t sure where the Thunder will be in free agency. At first glance, it appears the Thunder is set. OKC has 13 players under contract, a rookie in 24th overall pick Reggie Jackson who’ll soon make 14 and a key restricted free agent in Daequan Cook who’ll bump the roster to the maximum 15 bodies if he is re-signed as expected.
Oh, and KD is courting Shane Battier to come to OKC.