In October 1967, the Seattle Supersonics became the first professional sports team in Seattle. In seven short years, the Supersonics made it all the way to the conference semi-finals, in their first playoff appearance. Following the quick success, the Supersonics won the 1979 NBA Finals, earning the first and only franchise championship. Seattle said goodbye to the Supersonics in 2008 after the organization moved to become the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Thunder nonetheless have carried the torch making nine playoff appearances in 11 years.
Oklahoma City Thunder All-Time Roster
Point Guard – Russell Westbrook
A franchise legend, Russell Westbrook is arguably the most athletically dominating point guard in NBA history. Drafted fourth in the first round of the 2008 NBA Draft, subsequently becoming the Thunder’s first draft pick. In eleven years in Oklahoma City, Westbrook averaged 23 points, 8.4 assists, 7 rebounds, and 1.8 steals. Along with winning the 2016-17 NBA MVP award. He was a two-time NBA scoring champion and two-time NBA assists champion. Although he will be particularly remembered as the only player in NBA history to hold consecutive seasons averaging a triple-double.
Not only did Westbrook average a triple-double in three consecutive seasons from 2016-19 but he also made eight All-NBA teams and the All-Rookie first-team. Apart from this, Westbrook and the Thunder made nine playoff appearances and a Finals appearance in the 2012 NBA playoffs. His best playoff performance is the 2017 NBA playoffs averaging 37.4 points, 10.8 assists, 11.6 rebounds, and 2.4 steals. In the summer of 2019, it should be noted that the Thunder traded Westbrook to the Houston Rockets. Westbrook finished his Thunder career as the franchise career leader in points, third in rebounds, second in assists, and first in free-throws.
Shooting Guard – Ray Allen
Ray Allen was the centerpiece in a trade that sent Supersonics legend Gary Payton to the Milwaukie Bucks. Arriving in 2003, at this time Allen was at the peak of his game during the five seasons he spent in Seattle. Following this trade the Supersonics exceeded expectations making the Conference Semi-Finals during the 2005 playoffs. Subsequently, the franchise rewarded him with a five-year contract extension for $80 million. Allen responded by setting a franchise season record for most three-point field goals made that next year.
Along with a career-high 54 points against the Utah Jazz in the 2006-07 season, Allen also averaged a career-high 26.4 points. While wearing the green and gold, Allen earned an All-NBA second-team and four NBA All-Star teams. The Hall of Fame shooting guard finished his career in Seattle averaging 24.6 points, 4.6 rebounds, and 4.2 assists. After enduring surgery in 2007 removing bone spurs in both ankles, the Supersonics traded Allen to the Boston Celtics. Undoubtedly considered to be one of the greatest shooters in NBA history, Allen currently owns the NBA three-point scoring record.
Small Forward – Kevin Durant
During the last season in Seattle, Kevin Durant gave the fan Supersonics one last show. The second pick of the 2007 NBA Draft became a vital force in the franchise’s relocation. Winning the 2008 NBA Rookie of the Year award averaging 20.3 points, Durant overcame the team’s dismal record that year. That following year the Supersonics became the Thunder landing Durant in Oklahoma City where his success continued. In 2010, he became the youngest scoring champion in NBA history, averaging a significant 30.1 points per game.
As proof that it wasn’t a fluke season, Durant won three more NBA scoring titles in 2011, 2012 and 2014. Not only did he experience individual success but he also made six playoff appearances during his nine seasons with the franchise. Taking the Thunder to their first Finals appearance in 2012 and despite losing, Durant led all players averaging 30.6 points. Though never winning a title with the Thunder, he won the 2013-14 NBA MVP and made six All-NBA teams. Durant is a generational talent averaging 27.4 points and 7 rebounds over his nine seasons with the franchise.
Power Forward – Spencer Haywood
A devastating force on the court, Spencer Haywood spent the most productive years of his career as a Supersonic. Arriving in 1970 from the American Basketball Association, Haywood averaged 20.6 points over the last 33 games of the season. The 1971-72 season was his first full NBA season in which he averaged 26.2 points and grabbed 12.7 rebounds. That following year Haywood was unstoppable averaging 29.2 points and grabbing 12.9 rebounds per game. In addition to personal success, he helped lead the Supersonics to their first playoff appearance in the 1974-75 season.
Over his five seasons with the franchise from 1970-75, Haywood also set many franchise records. Specifically, career records such as rebounds per game and also minutes per game. In addition to this, Haywood also holds five-season records including his 1973-74 season averaging 13.4 rebounds. Apart from this, he made four All-NBA teams as well as four consecutive NBA All-Star teams. The Hall of Fame power forward finished as a Supersonic averaging 24.9 points and 12.1 rebounds before being traded.
Center – Jack Sikma
Considered to be a Supersonics legend, Jack Sikma spent nine seasons with the franchise from 1977-86. To begin with, the Supersonics drafted Sikma with the eighth pick in the 1977 NBA Draft. His rookie season started off with a bang being apart of the franchise’s first NBA Finals appearance. In addition to this, he made the All-Rookie first team. His most noteworthy performance came during the 1981-82 season, averaging 19.6 points and 12.7 rebounds.
Helping the Supersonics reach six playoff appearances, Sikma had many years of dominance in the playoffs. For example, his best playoff performance came in the 1984 NBA Playoffs averaging 22 points and 10.2 rebounds. However, what the fan base remembers most is that Sikma helped bring the franchise its first title in 1979. The 6’11” Center made seven NBA All-Star teams and the 1981-82 NBA All-Defensive second-team throughout his tenure in Seattle. All good things must come to an end and that ending came on the first of July in 1986 when the Supersonics traded Sikma away.
Point Guard – Gary Payton
Nicknamed “The Glove” for his innate ability to steal the ball and playing lock-down defense. The Supersonics drafted Gary Payton with the second pick in the 1990 NBA Draft. The Hall of Fame point guard made 19 NBA All-League teams while also leading the franchise to ten playoff appearances. As well as that, winning the 1995-96 NBA Defensive Player of the Year. Over the thirteen seasons from 1990-2003, Payton averaged 18.2 points, 7.4 assists, and 2.1 steals.
Shooting Guard – Dale Ellis
Arriving in the summer of 1986, that following season Dale Ellis won the NBA Most Improved Player award. Ellis was especially valuable during the 1988-89 season while he averaged a career-best 27.5 points and 4.2 rebounds. Ellis also helped the franchise to four playoff appearances during his seven-year career with Supersonics. Finishing with career averages of 20.9 points and 3.9 rebounds with the franchise.
Small Forward – Rashard Lewis
The 1998 NBA Draft had a diamond in the rough and this valuable player is the 32nd pick of the second round, Rashard Lewis. The 6’10” Small Forward helped the Supersonics to three playoff appearances. It’s important to note that his best season came in 2006-07 where he averaged 22.4 points and 6.6 rebounds. He has some notable career-high marks such as scoring 50 points during the 2003-04 season and 19 rebounds in the 2001-02 season. Lewis achieved these feats during his nine years with the franchise before being traded in 2007.
Power Forward – Shawn Kemp
The “Reign Man” nickname was given to Shawn Kemp by a beloved Supersonic announcer that was referring to his athletic dominance. In the 1989 NBA draft, the franchise spent the 17th pick in the first round on Kemp. It’s safe to say, they struck lightning in a bottle with Kemp who helped lead the Supersonics to seven playoff appearances in eight seasons. Even though his team lost the 1996 Finals, Kemp averaged 23.3 points, 10 rebounds, and 2 blocks. The Supersonics traded Kemp away in 1997 but he will forever be known as a Seattle legend.
Center – Bob Rule
Drafted by the Supersonics in the 1967 NBA Draft, Bob Rule is one of the franchise’s greatest talents. During the franchise’s first season of creation, Rule earned a place on the NBA All-Rookie first-team. In five seasons with the Supersonics, Rule averaged 21.4 points and 10 rebounds. His most noteworthy season came in the 19970-71 averaging 29.8 points and 11.5 rebounds. A torn Achilles consequently shortened his time with the Supersonics as the franchise traded him after in 1971.
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