The Oklahoma City Thunder is an American professional basketball team based in Oklahoma City. The Thunder competes in the National Basketball Association (NBA) as a member of the league’s Western Conference Northwest Division. The team plays its home games at Chesapeake Energy Arena.
Oklahoma City Team Salary
The Thunder’s NBA G League affiliate is the Oklahoma City Blue, which it owns. The Thunder is the only team in the major professional North American sports leagues based in the state of Oklahoma. Oklahoma City previously hosted the New Orleans Hornets (now the Pelicans) for two seasons following the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina in New Orleans.
The team was originally established as the Seattle SuperSonics, an expansion team that joined the NBA for the 1967–68 season. The SuperSonics moved in 2008 after a settlement was reached between the ownership group led by Clay Bennett and lawmakers in Seattle, Washington following a lawsuit. In Seattle, the SuperSonics qualified for the NBA playoffs 22 times, won their division six times, advanced to three NBA Finals, and won the 1979 NBA Championship. In Oklahoma City, the Thunder qualified for their first playoff berth during the 2009–10 season. They won their first division title as the Thunder in the 2010–11 season and their first Western Conference championship as the Thunder in the 2011–12 season, appearing in the NBA Finals for the fourth time in franchise history and the first time since 1996 when the team was based in Seattle.
General manager Sam Presti traded Paul George to the Los Angeles Clippers on July 10, 2019. In return, they received Danilo Gallinari, Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, and a record collection of future first-round draft picks. It was reported after the trade was announced that George had privately requested the trade to the Clippers as a result of superstar free agent Kawhi Leonard convincing George to team up with him on the Clippers. They also traded forward Jerami Grant to the Denver Nuggets for a 2020 protected first-round pick.