Oklahoma City Blue
Oklahoma City Blue logo
ConferenceWestern
LeagueNBA G League
Founded2001
HistoryAsheville Altitude
2001–2005
Tulsa 66ers
2005–2014
Oklahoma City Blue
2014–present
ArenaPaycom Center
LocationOklahoma City, Oklahoma
Team colorsBlue, sunset, navy blue, yellow[1][2]
       
General managerNazr Mohammed
Head coachKameron Woods
OwnershipProfessional Basketball Club LLC
Affiliation(s)Oklahoma City Thunder
Championships2 (2003, 2004)
Conference titles2 (2004, 2017)
Division titles4 (2003, 2017, 2018, 2019)
Websiteoklahomacity.gleague.nba.com

The Oklahoma City Blue are an American professional basketball team based in Oklahoma City and are affiliated with the Oklahoma City Thunder. The Blue compete in the NBA G League as members of the Western Conference. The Blue play their home games at Paycom Center, an arena shared with the Thunder.

The franchise began as the Asheville Altitude in 2001 playing in Asheville, North Carolina for four seasons. They won the 2004 and 2005 NBDL championship, becoming the first (and so far only) team to win consecutive league championships. After struggling with poor attendance, the franchise relocated to Tulsa, Oklahoma and played nine seasons as the Tulsa 66ers. Before the 2014–15 season, the franchise relocated again to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, becoming the Oklahoma City Blue. One of three teams still playing from the first league season, they are the oldest surviving NBA G League champion to play in the league.

History

Asheville Altitude (2001–2005)

The franchise began in 2001 when NBA Commissioner David Stern and deputy commissioner Russ Granik formed the National Basketball Development League. Asheville, North Carolina was chosen to one of the first eight franchises located in the southeastern United States. The franchise hired Joey Meyer and began their inaugural season in the 2001–02 season.

In its inaugural season, the Altitude had a 26–30 record, finishing sixth in the league. Center Paul Grant was named to the league's inaugural All-NBDL Second Team. After accumulating a 49–57 record after two seasons, the Altitude won back-to-back championships in its final two seasons in Asheville. Despite the Altitude's recent success, the franchise experienced poor attendance with fans often numbering in the dozens despite a 5,000 seat capacity. In its first four seasons, the Altitude averaged 788 fans a game and suffered at least $100,000 in losses.[3]

After the 2004–05 season, team president Rudy Bourg announced the Altitude had been sold to an independent ownership group and would relocate prior to the start of next season.[4]

Tulsa 66ers (2005–2014)

Before the start of the 2005–06 season, the league announced expansion to the southwest United States with Tulsa, Oklahoma being chosen as a host city. Initially planned to being independently owned and operated by the league, Southwest Basketball, LLC, operated by owner David Kahn, purchased the Altitude and relocated the franchise to Tulsa. The franchise also rebranded and was renamed to the Tulsa 66ers, in honor of the U.S. Route 66 which runs through the city and the state of Oklahoma.[5] Starting in 2005, the National Basketball Association announced an affiliation and assignment system for the league. Under the system, the 66ers were directly affiliated with the Chicago Bulls, Indiana Pacers, Milwaukee Bucks and the New Orleans Hornets.[6] Prior to the start of the 2006–07 season, the franchise's affiliation with the Bulls and Pacers ended with the addition of the New York Knicks.[7] Before the relocation of the Oklahoma City Thunder, the franchise had its final affiliations with the Bucks, Knicks, and the Dallas Mavericks during the 2007–08 season.[8]

On August 1, 2008, the newly relocated Oklahoma City Thunder agreed to purchase the 66ers for $2.25 million, becoming only the third NBA franchise to own a D-League team. In the agreement, the Thunder owned full control of the team's business and basketball operations and became the sole affiliate of the Thunder.[9]

Oklahoma City Blue (2014–present)

After getting offers from four venues, Professional Basketball Club felt none were suitable and announced the 66ers would move to Oklahoma City and play in the Cox Convention Center across the street from the Chesapeake Energy Arena where the parent club Oklahoma City Thunder plays starting with the 2014–15 season. The team's front offices are located in the Chesapeake Energy Arena along with the rest of the front office staff of the parent club Oklahoma City Thunder.[10] With the move, the team was rebranded from the 66ers to the Blue.[11][12] In the 2016–17 season, the team was the regular season Western Conference champion with 34 wins, a franchise record.[13]

In 2021, the Cox Convention Center was leased to a film production company and the arena was closed to become Prairie Surf Studios.[14] The Blue then moved into their parent team's home arena, the Paycom Center (then recently renamed from Chesapeake Energy Arena) in 2021.[15]

Season-by-season record

Season Regular season Playoffs
W L W–L% Finish W L W–L% Finish
Asheville Altitude
2001–02 26 30 .464 6th Missed playoffs
2002–03 23 27 .460 7th Missed playoffs
2003–04 28 18 .609 1st 2 0 1.000 Won D-League Championship
2004–05 27 21 .563 2nd 2 0 1.000 Won D-League Championship
Tulsa 66ers
2005–06 24 24 .500 7th Missed playoffs
2006–07 21 29 .420 4th Missed playoffs
2007–08 26 24 .520 3rd Missed playoffs
2008–09 15 35 .300 5th Missed playoffs
2009–10 27 23 .540 5th 2 1 .667 Lost D-League Finals
2010–11 33 17 .660 3rd 1 1 .500 Lost in Semifinals
2011–12 23 27 .460 6th Missed playoffs
2012–13 27 23 .540 3rd 1 1 .500 Lost in Semifinals
2013–14 24 26 .480 5th Missed playoffs
Oklahoma City Blue
2014–15 28 22 .560 2nd 0 1 .000 Lost in First Round
2015–16 19 31 .380 4th Missed playoffs
2016–17 34 16 .680 1st 1 1 .500 Lost in Conference Finals
2017–18 28 22 .560 1st 0 1 .000 Lost in First Round
2018–19 34 16 .680 1st 1 1 .500 Lost in Semifinals
2019–20 20 22 .476 3rd Season cancelled
2020–21 8 7 .533 9th Missed playoffs
2021–22 15 20 .429 10th Missed playoffs
2022–23 13 19 .406 10th Missed playoffs
2023–24 21 13 .618 3rd Quarterfinals (Rio Grande Valley)

Players and personnel

Current roster

Players Coaches
Pos. No. Name Height Weight DOB From
F 14 Daniel, Sam 6 ft 8 in (2.03 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1996-01-06 Florida Tech
G 10 Flagler, Adam (TW) 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1999-12-01 Baylor
F 18 Johnson, Keyontae (TW) 6 ft 4 in (1.93 m) 230 lb (104 kg) 2000-05-24 Kansas State
G 16 Johnson, Logan 6 ft 2 in (1.88 m) 180 lb (82 kg) 1999-10-11 Saint Mary's
F 9 Kong, Kong 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 2000-07-31 Kentucky State
F 11 Kopp, Miller 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 220 lb (100 kg) 1998-11-24 Indiana
G 24 Maldonado, Hunter 6 ft 6 in (1.98 m) 203 lb (92 kg) 1999-03-24 Wyoming
G 55 McConnell, Caleb 6 ft 7 in (2.01 m) 195 lb (88 kg) 1999-03-24 Rutgers
G 8 Ramsey, Jahmi'us 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 190 lb (86 kg) 2001-06-09 Texas Tech
C 30 Sarr, Olivier (TW) 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 240 lb (109 kg) 1999-02-20 Kentucky
G 5 Shackelford, Jaden 6 ft 3 in (1.91 m) 200 lb (91 kg) 2001-02-14 Alabama
C 20 Starkey, Noah 6 ft 11 in (2.11 m) 250 lb (113 kg) 1997-02-19 Southern Nazarene
F 33 Williams, KJ 6 ft 10 in (2.08 m) 210 lb (95 kg) 1999-09-03 LSU
Head coach
Assistant coach(es)

Legend
  • (C) Team captain
  • (DP) Unsigned draft pick
  • (FA) Free agent
  • (S) Suspended
  • (P) Prospects
  • (NBA) On assignment from NBA affiliate
  • (TW) Two-way affiliate player
  • Injured Injured

Roster
Last transaction: March 25, 2024

Coaches

# Name Years Regular season Playoffs Achievements
GC W L W–L% GC W L W–L%
Asheville Altitude
1 Joey Meyer 2001–08 348 175 173 .503 4 4 0 1.000 2 Championships (2004, 2005)
Tulsa 66ers
2 Paul Woolpert 2008–09 50 15 35 .300
3 Nate Tibbetts 2009–11 100 60 40 .600 13 6 7 .462
4 Dale Osbourne 2011–12 50 23 27 .460
5 Darko Rajaković 2012–14 100 51 49 .510 5 2 3 .400
Oklahoma City Blue
6 Mark Daigneault 2014–19 250 143 107 .572 11 4 7 .364 3 Coach of the Month awards
7 Grant Gibbs 2019–22 92 43 49 .467
8 Kameron Woods 2022–present 21 13 19 .406

NBA affiliates

Asheville Altitude

Tulsa 66ers

Oklahoma City Blue

References

  1. ^ "2018-19 Quick Facts" (PDF). 2018–19 Oklahoma City Blue Media Guide. NBA Media Ventures, LLC. November 7, 2018. Retrieved December 1, 2018.
  2. ^ "Oklahoma City Blue Reproduction Guideline Sheet". NBA Properties, Inc. Retrieved August 30, 2017.
  3. ^ "Would minor-league pro basketball fly in Asheville?". citizen-times.com.
  4. ^ "Altitude leaving Asheville". blueridgenow.com.
  5. ^ "Tulsa 66ers set for 9th season". tulsatoday.com.
  6. ^ "Tulsa 66ers announce NBA affiliations". oursportscentral.com.
  7. ^ "Tulsa 66ers Announce NBA Affiliates for 2006-07". oursportscentral.com.
  8. ^ "Tulsa 66ers Announce 2007-08 NBA Affiliates". oursportscentral.com.
  9. ^ "OKC's NBA franchise buys Tulsa's D-League team". oklahoman.com.
  10. ^ "Thunder moving 66ers from Tulsa to Oklahoma City". Tulsa World. July 19, 2014. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  11. ^ "Thunder Reveals New Name for Development Team". Oklahoma City Thunder. September 24, 2014. Retrieved July 14, 2017.
  12. ^ Mannix, Chris (November 7, 2014). "Thunder eye panic button, Paul Pierce reminisces and more". Sports Illustrated. Time, Inc. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  13. ^ Kemp, Adam (April 20, 2017). "OKC Blue season ends after playoff loss to Vipers". NewsOK.com. Retrieved June 6, 2017.
  14. ^ "Lease approved: OKC's Cox Center now in the movie business". The Oklahoman. December 9, 2020.
  15. ^ "Oklahoma City Blue Announces 2021-22 Regular-Season Schedule". OKC Blue. September 14, 2021.