Latest Oklahoma City Thunder News

    Oklahoma City Thunder Franchise Information

    Have a read on below at some quick stats and facts on the Oklahoma City Thunder to get you started: 

    Established:1967
    Stadium:Chesapeake Energy Arena
    Colours:Thunder blue, sunset, yellow & navy blue
    Hall of Famers:Ray Allen, Gary Payton, Patrick Ewing, Spencer Haywood, Dennis Johnson, Sarunas Marciulionis, Jack Sikma, David Thompson, Paul Westphal & Lenny Wilkens
    Hall of Fame Coaches:Lenny Wilkens 
    Rivals:Portland Trail Blazers, San Antonio Spurs, Golden State Warriors & Houston Rockets
    Legends:Gary Payton, Shawn Kemp, Fred Brown, Ray Allen, Jack Sikma, Dale Ellis, Dennis Johnson & Rashard Lewis
    Retired Numbers:1, 4, 10, 19, 24, 32 & 43
    Conference: Western Conference
    Division:Northwest Division
    NBA Championships1: 1979

    Oklahoma City Thunder History

    The Oklahoma City Thunder started off in Seattle in 1966, being the first Seattle based professional sports team and were known as the Seattle Supersonics, named after the Boeing 2707 Supersonic Transport Project, given Boeing’s head office was in Seattle. 

    The Supersonics started their inaugural season, going 23-59 in their first year, before trading for Lenny Wilkens in 1968. Wilkens brought star power and instant impact, and paired with second year player Bob Rule, was supposed to boost the Sonics up the standings. The team was only able to achieve 30 wins for the year, resulting in their coach being fired and Wilkens becoming player/coach. 

    The Sonics steadily improved with Wilkens leading the way, but were unable to make the playoffs in this time. A bright spot however was the 1971 All Star Game, where Wilkens won MVP. 

    The team added American Basketball Association MVP Spencer Haywood, after the NBA allowed him to enter the league. Haywood almost helped Wilkens lead the Sonics to their first playoff berth in 1972, but injuries saw the team lose eight of their last nine games to narrowly miss. 

    Wilkens was then traded to Cleveland, a very unpopular decision at the time, and saw the team’s record plummet, winning 21 less games than the previous year, despite Haywood’s 29 points and 13 rebounds per game, which earned him All-NBA honours. 

    The legendary Bill Russell was named coach of the Sonics, and led the team to the playoffs in just his second year, winning the first round of their first playoff appearance 2-1 over the Detroit Pistons, before falling to the Golden State Warriors in the second round.

    Haywood left the team and Seattle had a down two years, missing the playoffs in one of them, before Lenny Wilkens came back as coach after a dismal start to the 1977-78 season. Wilkens turned the team around, taking them back to the playoffs, and ending up in the NBA Finals where they lost to the Washington Bullets in a tough seven game series. 

    Wilkens kept the team together and the consistency paid dividends with the team winning its first division title on their way to facing the Bullets in the Finals again, this time defeating them 4-1, with Finals MVP Dennis Johnson and All Star center Jack Sikma leading the charge. 

    The on court success saw Seattle bring an NBA record (that has been broken since) 21,725 average home game attendance and the Sonics had a lot of players do well individually, Johnson being named to the All-NBA Defensive team and the All-NBA second team, while Sikma played in the All Star game for the second straight year. 

    Seattle made it back to the Western Conference Finals, facing the Los Angeles Lakers, led by star rookie Magic Johnson. The Sonics lost to the Lakers, who went on to win the Championship. Johnson was traded in the offseason and the Sonics were only able to make the playoffs in three of the following six seasons. 

    The 1986-87 was an unexpected one for the Supersonics, with forward Tom Chambers winning the All Star Game MVP and guard Dale Ellis winning Most Improved Player of the Year, with the pair leading the Sonics to the Western Conference Finals, despite a 39-43 regular season record. They faced the Lakers again and were unable to force a different outcome, being swept by the eventual champions. 

    Seattle remained in the hunt for the following five years, making the second round twice and only missing the playoffs once, before the 1992-93 season. Led by Shawn Kemp and Gary Payton, with George Karl as coach, the Sonics played with a chip on their shoulder, always with something to prove and made the Western Conference Finals. The Sonics took the Phoenix Suns to seven games but were unable to win the decider. 

    With momentum from the previous year, Seattle posted a record of 63-19, winning their second division title and finishing on top of the West standings. Facing the 8-seed Denver Nuggets in the first round, Seattle suffered a shock upset, losing 3-2 and becoming the first 1-seed to lose to an 8-seed in the opening round. 

    Seattle played well in the 1994-95 season but were ousted in the first round by the Lakers, setting up a ‘comeback season’ in 1995-96. Gary Payton won the 1996 Defensive Player of the Year award, while leading the team to a third division title and again, finishing on top of the West, with a 64-18 record. 

    Kemp and Payton helped Seattle dominate the first two rounds before defeating John Stockton, Karl Malone and the Utah Jazz in seven games to advance to the NBA Finals for just the third time in franchise history. Seattle were ultimately no match for Michael Jordan and the Chicago Bulls, losing 4-2. 

    Seattle continued their dominance winning 57 and 61 games in the next two seasons but were unable to reach the Western Conference Finals again and went on to struggle for the next 10 years. During this stretch they only managed to make the playoffs three times and traded Payton in 2002. 

    The Supersonics created headlines when young duo Ray Allen and Rashard Lewis led the team to a 52 win season, winning the division title and defeating the Sacramento Kings 4-1 in the opening round. The team unfortunately ran into the eventual champions, the San Antonio Spurs, in the second round and were eliminated. 

    The 2007 draft changed the fortune of the franchise, winning the second pick and being lucky enough to select Kevin Durant, after the Trail Blazers selected Greg Oden with the first pick. Seattle embraced a full rebuild around Durant, trading both Allen and Lewis for young players and picks, including Jeff Green. 

    Durant would go on to win Rookie of the Year in 2008, but the team only managed 20 wins, which was surrounded by off-court drama and after being sold to an Oklahoma City group of businessmen in 2006, was eventually relocated to Oklahoma City in the 2008 offseason. 

    The team drafted UCLA guard Russell Westbrook in 2008, hoping that Durant, Westbrook and Green would be able to lead the Oklahoma City Thunder to success. The Thunder only managed 3 more wins in the 2008-09 season, but their poor performance allowed them to have a high draft pick which they used to select James Harden. 

    The young Thunder team, led by Durant were determined to have success, winning 50 games in the 2009-10 season, making the playoffs for the first time in five years and Scott Brooks winning Coach of the Year. The Thunder would win two games against the defending champion Lakers, but lost 4-2 in the first round.

    Harden and veteran Serge Ibaka helped young stars Durant and Westbrook push OKC to their first division title in 12 years. The emerging Thunder beat the Nuggets and Grizzlies on the way to the Western Conference Finals, a place they hadn’t been since 1996. Oklahoma City would lose to the eventual champion Dallas Mavericks, but this made the team even hungrier. 

    In the 2011-12 season, Durant won All Star Game MVP, Harden won Sixth Man of the Year and the Thunder finished 2nd in the Western Conference standings. Oklahoma had a dominant playoffs, sweeping the defending champion Mavericks before defeating Kobe Bryant and the Lakers and the powerful San Antonio Spurs to advance to the NBA Finals. 

    The Thunder were facing the Miami Heat in what was seen as a direct match up between Durant and LeBron James, who many thought were the two best players in the world at the time. Oklahoma won the first game of the Finals, but were beaten in the following four, losing to the Heat.

    The Thunder signed Ibaka to an extension in the offseason, but was unable to come to an agreement with Harden. The front office preferred to avoid luxury tax and ended up trading Harden to the Rockets in a move that decimated the team’s momentum and fire power. Durant and Westbrook’s fire power was able to keep the Thunder at the top of the West, winning 60 and 59 wins in the 2012-13 and 2013-14 seasons. 

    A Westbrook injury and a difficult matchup against the Spurs meant that the Thunder were unable to make the NBA Finals in those two years. Durant however was named MVP in the 2013-14 season. Westbrook and Durant would both miss most of the next season, both requiring season ending surgery and the Thunder missed the playoffs for the first time in 6 seasons. 

    With both stars back and firing, the Thunder shot up the standings again, finishing third in the West with a 55-27 record. Oklahoma would defeat familiar foes, the Mavericks and the Rockets, on their way to facing Steph Curry and the defending champion Golden State Warriors in the Western Conference Finals. Durant and Westbrook helped the team to a 3-1 lead over the Warriors but were defeated in seven games. 

    That offseason saw Durant do the unthinkable and leave the Thunder, joining the team that just defeated them, the Golden State Warriors, who had made the Finals the previous two years, winning one Championship over that stretch. Durant’s departure allowed Westbrook to shine, becoming the second player in league history to average a triple double during the 2016-17 season and winning MVP. 

    The Thunder were never able to win a first round series under Westbrook’s leadership, even though the front office added All Star Paul George in 2017. The duo led the Thunder to the playoffs in 2017-18 and 2018-19, with George even finishing in the top three in MVP voting in 2019, but were defeated by the Jazz and the Trail Blazers in the first round each year. 

    The defeat to the Trail Blazers was a tough one with so much expected surrounding the team, and the front office decided that they no longer wanted mediocracy. The Thunder traded George to the Los Angeles Clippers for Danilo Galinari, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and a record five future first round draft picks. 

    Knowing that Westbrook couldn’t lead a team deep into the playoffs by himself, the front office traded their star to the Houston Rockets for Chris Paul and two future first round picks. Many thought that Paul and Gallinari would be traded, with the Thunder embracing a full rebuild around Shai and their mountain of future picks, but a revitalised Paul pushed OKC into the playoff picture, earning himself an All Star Game selection along the way. 

    Oklahoma finished the regular season in 5th spot with a 44-28 record, facing Westbrook, Harden and the Houston Rockets in the first round. After losing the first two games, Paul willed the Thunder back to even the series 2-2. The teams traded wins, setting up a game seven against their former stars. 

    The Thunder missed a shot in the dying seconds that would have won them the series, going down 4-3 to the Rockets and being eliminated from the playoffs. With the team still unsure whether to continue contending or embrace a rebuild, Billy Donovan’s contract as head coach wasn’t extended. 

    After the 2019 offseason was supposed to kickstart the rebuild, it finally came to fruition in 2020. Chris Paul was traded to Phoenix for players and picks, with those players then on-traded for more picks. They also sent Dennis Schroder to the Lakers for Danny Green and a first, with Green then traded to the Sixers for Al Horford and a first.

    Shai Gilgeous-Alexander was giving the keys to the car but plantar fasciitis cut his season short. His injury was bad but the Thunder’s losing streak was even worse. They tied a franchise record for 14 straight losses, losing 21 of 22 games at one point.

    All of the tanking, losing and trading has allowed them to have three picks in the top 20 in the 2021 draft, but they finished with just the equal-fifth worst record and received pick six in the draft, much lower than they would have liked.

    It was another rough season for the Thunder as they finished with a record of 24-58 and 14th of the Western Conference. However, the future looks bright on this team as they added Chet Holmgren.

    Expert 2022-23 Picks & Preview on Oklahoma City Thunder

    Our experts will provide an analysis on the Thunder chances closer to the start of the 2022-23 season. In the meantime, you can check out our thoughts on the team before the 2021-22 season started:

    The Thunder finished with just 22 wins last season and missed the playoffs. However, the team has a lot of optimism going into the future. This season the team will be looking to return to the playoffs while continuing to develop their young talent. The team is still very much in the midst of its rebuild and has been steadily building through the draft. The time is coming where the team will need to pay dividends on their rebuild but it looks unlikely that this season will be their time. Can this extremely young group do enough to make the play-in or are they still a few seasons away?

    Front Office

    The Thunder have had a lot of stability under GM Sam Presti and have had a lot of success in the past. After starting their rebuild, the Thunder have been accumulating draft picks to drive their rebuild. The team currently has 18 first round picks and 18 second round picks over the next few years. Despite their success with getting draft capital, the team still played poorly despite Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s great play. The team is currently in its worst rough patch in years. 

    First year head coach Mark Daigneault had a tough time leading this tough roster but looks to improve in year 2. Daigneault has been a massive unknown and famously didn’t have a wikipedia page when he first got hired. Daigneault has a reputation for player development which is perfect for this young team. Daigneault runs a fast-paced scheme and runs an offense that shoots more 3s than 25 of the league’s other teams. Although the Thunder played poorly in his first season it was not due to Daigneault’s system but rather the team’s horrid shooting. 

    Going into Daigneault’s second year as coach, the team has shed a lot of weight getting rid of Al Horford, Kemba Walker, Moses Brown and Alprene Sengun. To replace these players the Thunder brought in Aussie Josh Giddey, Derrick Favours, Tre Mann and Aaron Wiggins. The marquee name of that group is first round pick Josh Giddey. 

    Giddey is OKC’s highest pick since James Harden but there are many questions around him. Going into the draft Giddey was a skilled oversized point guard which made his addition to the Thunder’s roster questionable as they have SGA and Lu Dort as the entrenched 1 and 2 guards. 

    However, Giddey has played well in the preseason and projects to be the team’s starting small forward. Giddey will have to adjust to play off-ball as SGA will run the offense. Favours will also be a day 1 starter as he is the only player listed as a centre on the team’s roster and has been productive in his career. This roster is promising but it isn’t going to be good enough to make the play-in on talent alone. 

    Key Players

    The key player for this team is Shai Gilgeous-Alexander. SGA played just 35 games last year but played very well in his first year without Chris Paul. SGA averaged 23.7 points, 4.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists while shooting 50.8% from the field and 41.8% from 3. SGA has shown he can score on all levels and is the team’s definitive number one option. This effort earned Gilgeous-Alexander a 5 year max contract extension. 

    Now SGA is back healthy, he will continue to see his offensive role expand. He might not be an MVP candidate but if SGA can continue to play as efficiently as he has in the past, while increasing his usage to the level of other young guards like Trae Young, SGA may end up becoming an All-Star or even an All-NBA level guard. 

    The second most important player on this team will be Josh Giddey. On a team that is so young and raw, they will end up being on the bottom of the Western conference unless their young players can grow up fast. This is what will be required of Giddey as he enters his rookie season. After playing point guard in the NBL, Giddey has to quickly get used to not having the ball in his hands during every play. If Giddey can steadily improve his somewhat inconsistent shooting, he should be able to earn himself more minutes. 

    If not, Giddey may be relegated to the bench where he will be SGA’s understudy. However, if Giddey can continue to earn playing time by being a viable option on the 3 point line, he may get more and more opportunities handling the ball. SGA isn’t the pure playmaker Giddey is and if Giddey can show promise, he may become the primary ball-handler by the end of the season while SGA is the go-to scoring option. If this can happen, the Thunder will look very good going forward.

    Breakout Player

    The breakout candidate for this team is Aleksej Pokusevski. Pokusevski is a big 7 footer who has a mixed bag of tools. This offseason he has added a bunch of muscle to his lanky frame and may be able to get some minutes at the 5 behind Derrick Favours. Pokusevski averaged 11.1 points, 5.4 rebound and 2.7 assists in his 28 starts last year. 

    Pokusevski also shot 31.8% from 3, which isn’t amazing but should improve moving forward. If Pokusevski can get stronger throughout the season and improve his shot, Pokusevski could earn big minutes as a stretch 4 or 5, which would be perfect alongside Dort and Giddey who both aren’t amazing shooters. Pokusevski is still raw but he could very well be the Cinderella story of this season.

    Oklahoma City Thunder Betting & Odds Preview 2022-23

    The 2021-22 season is over and we take a look back at the Thunder betting history for the most recent season. We will provide more information in relation to the new 2022-23 season once information becomes available. In the meantime, have a look at the betting and odds information for the Thunder before the start of the previous season:

    Despite such an incredible season in 2019-20, there is still uncertainty surrounding the Thunders and whether they will trade their older veterans to full embrace the rebuild. Because of this, their 2020-21 Championship odds opened at just +6600 and even drifted to +8000 just before the draft in mid-November.

    After trading Chris Paul, those odds plummeted, going to +25000 to be on the bottom of the league. The change in odds was justified when the Thunder continued to lose games and rest healthy players, making it a tough watch for OKC fans.

    While there was minimal expectation surrounding their season, the Thunder still managed to finish with the equal-third worst record against the spread, 31-40-1. While being 19-17 on the road is slightly impressive, being just 12-23-1 at home is miserable.

    Given their youth and inexperience, consistency on both ends of the floor wasn’t the Thunder’s strong suit. Because of this, a 35-35-2 total points record seems fair, however how they got their is bizarre. Maybe the inspiration of playing at home helped their offense get going, given their 22-14 O/U record at home, with their road  record just 13-21-2.

    Oklahoma City Thunder FAQ

    Still got some burning questions about the Oklahoma City Thunder? Well, we have answered some of the most common questions people have, hopefully you will find the answer you are looking for below! 

    Where do the Oklahoma City Thunder play?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder play their home games at the Chesapeake Energy Arena. 

    Who owns the Oklahoma City Thunder?

    The Professional Basketball Club is the ownership group of the Oklahoma City Thunder, where Clayton Bennett is the chairman.  

    Have the Oklahoma City Thunder won an NBA Championship?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder have won 1 NBA championship, in 1979 when they were the Seattle Supersonics. 

    Who is the Oklahoma City Thunder coach?

    Mark Daigneault is the head coach of the Oklahoma City Thunder. Daigneault was hired in the 2020 offseason after being an assistant of the Thunder for one season and coach of their G-League team before that. 

    Do the Oklahoma City Thunder play tonight?

    Are you wondering if the Oklahoma City Thunder are playing tonight? Well, SportsTips has all the details you need about upcoming Oklahoma City Thunder games! Make sure you check this page at the top for all the details you are looking for.

    What is the Oklahoma City Thunder record?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder had a 24-58 win-loss record for the 2021-22 NBA season. 

    Did the Oklahoma City Thunder win last night?

    Fans of the Oklahoma City Thunder are all wanting to know if they won the game last night. You can find more information in relation to the team’s recent form in games on the page at the top.

    How much are the Oklahoma City Thunder worth?

    According to Forbes Magazine, the Oklahoma City Thunder are worth $1.63 billion.

    Who do the Oklahoma City Thunder play tonight?

    Like a lot of things in the NBA, things change pretty quickly. So, if you are looking for more information about who the Oklahoma City Thunder play tonight, you have come to the right place. We have all this information for you in detail, you can find these details for upcoming games at the top of the page.

    How to watch the Oklahoma City Thunder?

    You can watch the Oklahoma City Thunder on TV channels like ESPN, ABC, TNT, NBA TV or Fox Sports Oklahoma, or subscribe to NBA League Pass. 

    Will the Oklahoma City Thunder make the playoffs this year?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder did not make the playoffs in the 2021-22 season after finishing 14th in the West.

    Will the Oklahoma City Thunder get the 1st pick in the NBA Draft?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder did not receive the 1st pick in the 2022 NBA Draft

    When do the Oklahoma City Thunder play?

    Oklahoma City Thunder fans are always looking for more information about when their team plays the next game. For all the information you have been craving and more, be sure to check the top of this page. Here at SportsTips, we list all the information you need like the tip off time, location of the game and the all important NBA odds.

    Where did the Oklahoma City Thunder finish the season?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder finished the 2021-22 NBA season in 14th place in the Western Conference. 

    How many games did the Oklahoma City Thunder win?

    The Oklahoma City Thunder won just 24 games during the 2021-22 NBA season.