In overtime, behind and with little time on the clock Oklahoma City’s Russell Westbrook sinks an off balanced three and pushes the Thunder past the Golden State Warriors 113-112. This happened on November 29th, 2013 but 9 years prior this was all a dream of the people in Oklahoma City. It all started on August 29, 2005 when hurricane Katrina released hell on New Orleans. Most of New Orleans was destroyed by flood waters. This caused the New Orleans Hornets to temporarily relocate to Oklahoma City. They played in Oklahoma City for two seasons before New Orleans was able to host them again. These two seasons created national attention toward Oklahoma City for the great fan base and prospective city for a new team. A group of Oklahoma City investors led by Clay Bennett buy the Sonics franchise. After the 2007-2008 season the Seattle Super Sonics file relocation papers to relocate to Oklahoma City. When they get to
Oklahoma City they are renamed the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Moving of the Seattle Super Sonics to Oklahoma City and the creation of the Oklahoma City Thunder have brought many positive impacts to the Oklahoma City metro and to the entire state of Oklahoma both economically and socially.
The creation of the Oklahoma City Thunder has had huge economic effects on the local and state economies. According to the Oklahoma City Chamber of Commerce, each thunder home game puts $1.3 million dollars into the local economy, every season there are 41 home games, which equals around $53.3 million dollars per season. Jordan Wiley, general manager of Leon’s on Brookside, says “Thunder games have created a generous boost in sales…Thunder games held on weekends can double sales. A Thunder game held during the week can triple sales. (Fox23, pars. 3-7)” Leon’s on Brookside is located in Tulsa showing that the Thunder has an impact in not only in the host city but also in cities state wide. Also located near Tulsa is the city of Jenks which is called home by the Elm Street Pub. “Basketball games help increase revenue, but they games also unite Oklahomans” says Jeremy Pfannenstiel, owner of Elm Street Pub “This is one time where we have had one team that everybody roots for, it really brings Oklahomans together.(Fox23, pars. 9-12)”
“I have friends who are Sooners and friends who are OSU fanatics who will get into
fistfights over sports, and we have watch parties in Altus and they’re arm in arm watching the Thunder play, they’re united enemies cheering with one voice for the Thunder(Lackmeyer 1)” Says Danny Robbins who lives in Altus and own season tickets. He and his wife Zina drive 138 miles to go to home games. They decided that it was cheaper to lease an apartment downtown than to rent hotel rooms. Locally the Thunder has drawn people toward the downtown and midtown areas. These areas have drastically increased since 2008 and are continually increasing.
The Oklahoma City Thunder was awarded the Inaugural Chairman’s Award for Economic Impact...