Archive - August 2017

Ranking all Thunder uniforms

With the Nike rebranding, which is essentially the same thing with some very minor details, I decided I’m going to rank all of the past Oklahoma City Thunder uniforms. No, I will not include any Seattle SuperSonics jerseys.  All of the uniforms are simple:

  • Traditional home
  • Traditional road
  • Dark blue Alternates
  • OKC Pride jerseys
  • Sunset Jerseys

One point of clarity: I’ll be using all of the Adidas branded jerseys.

You can view the Thunder jersey records through the 2012-13 season here.

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Russell Westbrook named NBPA MVP and more

It’s the middle of August and Russell Westbrook is still cleaning up awards. The NBA’s Player’s Association released their Player’s Voice Awards and most of it is done without voting released. Westbrook was named the MVP, best dressed and hardest to guard.

The Oklahoma City Thunder becomes only the eighth team in NBA history to have multiple MVP award winners. Westbrook’s rise to the MVP should be no surprise. There were flashes throughout his career of this greatness. His ability to attack the rim became his stallion instead of his Achilles.

In a league of superstars, Oklahoma City has been blessed with one that is truly city first. He speaks of loyalty and wears OKC proudly. His work in the community only tops his work on the hardwood. Oklahoma City is blessed to have a player like Westbrook in our community.

Westbrook beat out James HardenKawhi Leonard, and LeBron James for the MVP.

It’s really not a surprise Westbrook was voted best dressed. The international fashion icon rocks the runway almost as good as he does the NBA hardwood. From his stylish shoes to his fantastic choice of man blouses, Westbrook’s fashion sense knows now bounds.

In the video they say that swag and confidence are key components of winning this coveted award and Russell Westbrook surely has all of that and more.

Westbrook’s win on hardest to guard comes down to his explosion ability through the lane. Like a gun going off, with only milli-seconds to get out of the way, Westbrook’s dominating ability gives defenders fits. It makes the Thunder lethal on offense and with the addition of Paul George, he may be even harder to guard.

 

There were other awards voted as well as Nick Collison won best Thunder teammate.

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Thunder Digits: Schedule Edition

The NBA released the 2017-18 NBA schedules and wouldn’t you know, the Thunder were one of the teams to get a schedule. Wild! Anyway, here are some numbers, aka Thunder Digits, on the Thunder’s schedule. If you hate it, let us know on social media.

27

The Thunder will play on national TV 27 times this season. That is fourth most only behind Golden State, Houston and Cleveland. Adding in their 10 NBATV dates, that is 37 times America will be able to see the Thunder.

3

Oklahoma City will play basketball in three different countries this season. They’ll travel to Mexico, Canada, and the United States.

0

The number of four-games-in-five nights this season. The NBA made it a focal point to eliminate those this season. By moving the schedule to an earlier start date, no team in the NBA has one this season.

Top Five interesting non-KD Thunder games this season.

14

The league also made an effort of eliminating a plethora of back-to-backs. Oklahoma City in one season had 20 back-to-back games. This season, that number drops to 14.

44,887

During season, the Thunder travel a whopping 44,887 miles. That’s dead average (15th) for the NBA. Portland at 55,298 miles with the longest to travel and Indiana only traveling 37,624 miles for the league lowest.

4

Oklahoma City will see Kevin Durant four times season, two in Oakland and two in Bricktown. This is becoming a real rivalry with hatred on both sides.

12/13

Paul George returns to Indiana to face the Pacers on Dec. 13. Oklahoma City in turn will see Victor Oladipo and Domas Sabonis for the first time since trading them for George.

3

The longest road trip of the season for the Thunder is three. That happens FIVE different times (Oct. 27-31; Nov. 5-9; Dec. 13-16; Jan. 3-7; Feb. 14-24).

4

The longest home stand for Oklahoma City. That happens twice (Dec. 25-31 and March 6-12).

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The Curse of 3

Doug McDermott joins the unfortunate list of Thunder players who’ve changed their number to No. 3. It’s a long list and the list isn’t good.

It’s the same number he wore his rookie year in Chicago, before changing to No. 11 last season. That number is taken by Enes Kanter.

McDermott who was No. 25 last season took over No. 3 while many Thunder fans, who still own real estate on Waiters Island, thought the number would be retired forever. There were other players who never panned out or were just down right frustrating in a Thunder uniform.

McDermott, 25, averaged 9.0 points on 37 percent from three last season. His minutes dwindled and the frustrated mounted for him. However, he is still considered a key piece in the Thunder’s rotation going forward. Oklahoma City has the former Creighton star signed through this season.

Let’s take a look on how those who wore No. 3 did for the Thunder:

DJ White

White spent three seasons in Oklahoma City, amounting to a grand total of 186 points in 451 minutes. He appeared in only 19 games his first two seasons, mainly due to injuries. So, he’s essentially an after thought. Fun trivia question answer for you: Oklahoma City had three players drafted in the 2008 NBA Draft. Two of the players were Serge Ibaka (No. 24) and Russell Westbrook (No. 4), who was the third? DJ White (No. 29).

Nate Robinson

On the same day DJ White was traded to Charlotte for Nazr Mohammed, Nate Robinson was acquired with Kendrick Perkins in the Thunder famous trade that changed the face of the organization.

Robinson only appeared in four games in the regular season and his stats were abysmal. Fans chanted his name but his production did not meet the demand. Following the 2010-11 season, Robinson was essentially told not to show up to training camp and the Thunder would be releasing him. They eventually did and his legacy would be over in a Thunder uniform.

When Robinson was released he signed with the Warriors a month later.

Perry Jones

The number would remain idle until Perry Jones decided he would desecrate the number by changing from No. 8 to No. 3 in 2013. In his two seasons while wearing No. 3, Jones put up some of his best numbers in his career. That’s not very hard as his only three seasons in the NBA were with the Oklahoma City Thunder.

In two of his three seasons, including one of the years wearing No. 3, Jones was picked as the worst Thunder player. He also was voted the third and sixth worst Thunder player of all-time.

Jones was traded in July of 2015 and was waived by the Celtics before even playing a minute.

Dion Waiters

Waiters spent a little over a season in Bricktown. During his time, he shed his selfish demeanor and became a true teammate. He’s shown that in Miami. Most Thunder fans love the guy. When Waiters changed from No. 23 to No. 3, the transformation was essentially complete.

He was efficient. He was consistent. Most of all, he was an all around good teammate for the Thunder. He was vital in their playoff run to the Western Conference Finals. His games against the Spurs go down as some of the best in Thunder history.

It is a shame the Thunder and Waiters had a falling out, as Waiters accused the Thunder of toying with him with the Durant signing. Despite his bad words about the Thunder, most agree and still have property on Waiters Island.

Domantas Sabonis

The Sabonis prodigy never really formed for the Thunder. The son of Arvidas Sabonis, the former Portland Trail Blazers never really could find his confidence as the season went along. He shot the three well but towards the end of the first part of the year, the Thunder knew they had issues. They made the move to rent Taj Gibson and the writing was on the wall for Sabonis.

Sabonis was acquired on draft night with Victor Oladipo from the Orlando Magic for the rights to Serge Ibaka. Oklahoma City’s rebuilding process began with this trade. At the time they didn’t know it but it had began.

The Thunder traded Sabonis and Victor Oladipo for Paul George, another rental in June. So, his time with the Thunder was short lived, despite being a lottery selection.

History shows No. 3 is not a lucky number. Only Waiters had a good season while wearing the number and the odds of McDermott, who’s coming off a subpar seasons since being traded is against him. He’ll need to show he’s worth the minutes he wants. He’ll have to fight across the curse of three.

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Top 5 non-KD interesting games

The Oklahoma City Thunder’s schedule is out and boy are there a lot of games. The Thunder play games in three countries. They have odd time games (1 p.m., 2:30 p.m., 4 p.m., etc.). They’ll also play on national television a whopping 37 times, including NBATV.

Here are five games you’ll want to catch this season:

Nov. 24 vs. Detroit Pistons

It’s weird. Reggie Jackson ans Russell Westbrook haven’t played each other. Despite all of the trash talking and all of the tears of joy, the two have yet to do battle on the court. Jackson was hurt or the Thunder rested players, so they’ve yet to go toe-to-toe.

There are typically two Westbrook’s that come out when he’s playing someone he geniunely doesn’t like; he either ethers you into non-exisistence or he turns into a fumbling baffoon. We don’t quite see the latter anymore but you never know.

I fully imagine that Westbrook is going to dunk all over Jackson if given the chance. I do think Jackson would run down the tunnel before given Westbrook the satisifaction of dunking on him.

Dec. 7 In Mexico City, against the Brooklyn Nets

While the Brooklyn Nets are essentially the worst team in the association, the Oklahoma City Thunder expanding their brand in the NBA’s Mexico games is an amazing idea. This game, not on national television, will be play in Mexico City and will be the third country Oklahoma City will play in this season.

Over their tenure, Oklahoma City will have played in six different countries.

Dec. 13 at Indiana Pacers

Paul George returns to Indianapolis for the first time in his career not in a Pacer uniform. For George, it’ll be bittersweet. He’ll probably be booed and cheered. The mixed emotions will be higher than a middle school dance.

For the Thunder, they’ll play Victor Oladipo and Domantas Sabonis for the first time. I don’t know if the feelings the Pacers and George have will equal what Oladipo and Domas will be the same but the game will be interesting, none the less.

Jan. 10 at Minnesota T-Wolves

This is the last meeting between the two teams who will probably win the Northwest Division. The national showdown on ESPN will feature Jimmy Butler, Karl Anthony-Towns, and Andrew Wiggins. Also, Taj Gibson will return. Even in his short stint in Bricktown, he’s beloved throughout.

March 20 at Boston Celtics

While the Thunder will play the Celtics in Oklahoma City on Nov. 3, going to Boston in late March will have huge implications on the playoff race. Plus, going to Boston when they’re good can be magical.

The Celtics with everyone could be a special team and with the Thunder, if they glue, could lead this game into a really big game in late March. Plus, being on TNT will help.

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Oklahoma City Thunder Regular Season Schedule Released

It’s that time we’ve all been waiting for, the 2017-18 NBA schedule has been released. There are some really cool things in the schedule, like we’re going to Mexico! Then, the bad ones: Durant comes to Oklahoma City on Nov. 22.

Overall, the Thunder will play on national television 37 times. This includes NBATV. All non-exclusive national TV games will be on FS Oklahoma for the umpteenth year.

Here’s how it breaks down by appearances, most to lowest.

  • TNT: 12
  • NBATV: 10
  • ESPN: 9
  • ABC: 6

Not counting NBATV games, the Thunder’s 27 times on national TV, is the fourth most in the league behind Warriors (31), Rockets (28) and the Cavaliers (27).

For the first time in league history, the schedule does not have any team playing four games in five nights. This is part of the NBA’s effort to cut down on injuries and reduce the number of games in which teams rest healthy players.

Back-to-back slates also have been reduced to an average of 14.4 per team, down from 16.3 per team last season. No team has more than 16 back-to-backs this season. The Thunder have 11 back-to-backs this season.

Here is the schedule:

DateTeamTime (CST)Channel
Oct. 19vs. Knicks7 p.m.TNT
Oct. 21at Jazz8 p.m.FSOK
Oct. 22vs. T-Wolves6 p.m.FSOK
Oct. 25vs. Pacers7 p.m.FSOK
Oct. 27at T-Wolves7 p.m.NBATV
Oct. 28at Bulls7 p.m.FSOK
Oct. 31at Bucks7 p.m.NBATV
Nov. 3vs. Celtics7 p.m.ESPN
Nov. 5at Blazers8 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 7at Kings9 p.m.NBATV
Nov. 9at Nuggets9:30 p.m.TNT
Nov. 10vs. Clippers8 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 12vs. Mavericks6 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 15vs. Bulls7 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 17at Spurs7 p.m.ESPN
Nov. 20at Pelicans7 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 22vs. Warriors7 p.m.ESPN
Nov. 24vs. Pistons7 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 25at Mavericks7:30 p.m.FSOK
Nov. 29at Magic6 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 1vs. T-Wolves7 p.m.NBATV
Dec. 3vs. Spurs 6 p.m.NBATV
Dec. 5vs. Jazz7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 7at Brooklyn (Mexico)9 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 9at Memphis8 p.m.NBATV
Dec. 11vs. Charlotte7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 13at Indiana6 p.m.ESPN
Dec. 15at Philadelphia6 p.m.ESPN
Dec. 16at Knicks6:30 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 18vs. Nuggets7 p.m.NBATV
Dec. 20vs. Jazz7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 22vs. Atlanta7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 23at Jazz7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 25vs. Rockets7 p.m.ABC
Dec. 27vs. Raptors7 p.m.NBATV
Dec. 29vs. Bucks7 p.m.FSOK
Dec. 31vs. Mavericks6 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 3at Lakers9:30 p.m.ESPN
Jan. 4at Clippers9:30 p.m.TNT
Jan. 7at Suns7 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 9vs. Blazers7 p.m.NBATV
Jan. 10at T-Wolves7 p.m.ESPN
Jan. 13at Hornets4 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 15vs. Kings7 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 17vs. Lakers7 p.m.ESPN
Jan. 20at Cavaliers2:30 p.m.ABC
Jan. 23 vs. Nets7 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 25vs. Wizards7 p.m.TNT
Jan. 27at Pistons6 p.m.FSOK
Jan. 28vs. Philadelphia5 p.m.ESPN
Jan. 30at Wizards6 p.m.FSOK
Feb. 1at Nuggets9:30 p.m.TNT
Feb. 2vs. Pelicans8 p.m.FSOK
Feb. 4vs. Lakers1 p.m.ABC
Feb. 6at Warriors9:30 p.m.TNT
Feb. 11vs. Grizzlies6 p.m.FSOK
Feb. 13vs. Cavaliers7 p.m.TNT
Feb. 14at Grizzlies7 p.m.FSOK
ALLSTARBREAK
Feb. 22at Kings9:30 p.m.FSOK
Feb. 24at Warriors7:30 p.m.ABC
Feb. 26vs. Magic7 p.m.FSOK
Feb. 28at Mavericks7:30 p.m.FSOK
March 2at Suns8 p.m.FSOK
March 3at Blazers9 p.m.FSOK
March 6vs. Rockets7 p.m.TNT
March 8vs. Suns7 p.m.FSOK
March 10vs. Spurs7 p.m.ABC
March 12vs. Kings7 p.m.FSOK
March 13at Hawks6:30 p.m.FSOK
March 16vs. Clippers7 p.m.NBATV
March 18at Raptors12 p.m.FSOK
March 20at Celtics7 p.m.TNT
March 23vs. Heat7 p.m.FSOK
March 25vs. Blazers6 p.m.FSOK
March 29at Spurs7 p.m.TNT
March 30vs. Nuggets7 p.m.FSOK
April 1at Pelicans5 p.m.FSOK
April 3vs. Warriors7 p.m.TNT
April 7at Rockets7:30 p.m.ABC
April 9 at Heat6:30 p.m.FSOK
April 11vs. Grizzlies7 p.m.FSOK
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Thunder sign Daniel Hamilton to two-way contract

While the big name contracts are done with, except for one, the Oklahoma City Thunder announced they’ve signed Daniel Hamilton, to a two-way deal on Aug. 3.

Hamilton, 21, played last season with the Oklahoma City Blue after being drafted No. 56 by Oklahoma City in the 2016 NBA Draft.

Starting in the 2017-18 season, each team is allowed two players on two-way contracts, in addition to the standard 15 players on the roster. Players on two-way contracts spend most of the season in the G-League, but can be called up to their NBA team for a maximum of 45 days.

With the Blue, Hamilton started 47 of 49 games, averaged 14.9 points, 8.0 rebounds and 4.7 assists per game. His rebounding led all rookie guards in the G-League.

Hamilton’s major showing was in the 2017 G-League Playoffs. His triple-double against the Santa Cruz Warriors helped the Blue to the G-League Western Conference Finals. It was only the team’s fifth triple-double in history.

 

“Daniel has shown significant strides in his development since entering our program,” said Presti. “We are thrilled that he will receive the first two-way contract in Thunder history as we expect him to spend time with both teams this season as he continues to evolve as a player.”

Hamilton competed with the Thunder in the 2017 Mountain Dew Orlando Pro Summer League, where he started four games and averaged 11.8 points, 5.3 rebounds and an Orlando Summer League-high 6.8 assists per game.

In his time at Connecticut, he was named American Athletic Conference (AAC) Rookie of the Year, an AAC All-Conference Second Team selection and the Most Outstanding Player of the 2016 AAC Championship.

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Thunder release 2017 preseason schedule

The Oklahoma City Thunder announced their 2017 preseason schedule on Aug. 4. There will be only four preseason games this season, the lowest since the lockout shortened season of 2011-12.

The Thunder will play only two games at Chesapeake Energy Arena, one in Tulsa at the BOK Center and will play the Denver Nuggets at the Pepsi Center.

The first game will be in Tulsa against the Houston Rockets on Oct. 3. They’ll be back in Oklahoma City on Oct. 6 to take on the New Orleans Pelicans.

On Oct. 8, the Thunder will welcome in Austrailia’s NBL team, Melbourne United at the Peake. This will be the third time in franchise history Oklahoma City will host a preseason game vs. an international opponent.

Oklahoma City concludes their preseason schedule with a trip to the Mile High City to play the Nuggets on Oct. 10.

So, that’s four games in a week and the NBA schedule is set to tip-off on Oct. 17.

All games will be on the WWLS the Sports Animal (98.1 in OKC and 97.1 in Tulsa). The Thunder will broadcast only the Denver game on FS Oklahoma, leaving the other three available on the Thunder app or online at okcthunder.com.

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OKC getting a black jersey?

Could the Oklahoma City Thunder‘s third jersey be an alternate? A silly slip up by Michael Cage, an Oklahoma City color commentator for Fox Sports Oklahoma, that’s a distinct possibility.

When you link to that instagram, it has been edited to say only this:

Love the new Nike technology design Thunder uniforms for next season summer keeps getting better & better Nike makes its long awaited debut to the association you knew this partnership would eventually happen.”

It’s quite possible Cage misunderstood or accidentally said black instead of blue. He could have just misunderstood all together. However, a couple of things lead me to disagree with the notion he meant to say black instead of blue.

  1. If he was to say black instead of blue, he would have just edited out the word black. However, his entire post was changed.
  2. The rumor of a black uniform has been in talks for awhile. The NBA Store even had an Adidas version replica sold on their site.

What probably happened: Cage heard of a black alternate. He’s excited about it. Wasn’t supposed to say anything. He posted it and was told to edit his post. He did but hasn’t edited twitter for some reason.

It is also very possible the Thunder aren’t doing a black alternate and that’s another reason for the edit. Either way, the Thunder should do it. It would look fire as the kids say.

Here are a couple of bad photoshops if the Thunder were to go black alternates:

Would you be in favor of a back alternate?

Would you want a black alternate?

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