Season Ticket Holder Spotlight: Al Yowell

TULSA, Okla., August 20, 2013 - When the Tulsa 66ers take the floor at the SpiritBank Event Center, they are cheered on by some of the best fans in the NBA Development League. In preparation of the 2013-14 season, Tulsa66ers.com is highlighting a few of Tulsa’s most passionate fans, hearing about some of their favorite memories of 66ers basketball. This week, we asked Al Yowell of Catoosa about his experiences as a season ticket holder since the team started up in 2005. To learn more about becoming a 66ers season ticket holder, visit our ticket central page or call (918) 585-8444.

How long have you been a 66ers season ticket holder?
We started with a quarter-season partial package in 2005, just my wife and me. Over the next two years, we evolved into full season packages as the 66ers became a part of our lives.

How many season tickets do you have? Who do you normally bring to the game?
For several years it was just my wife and me, but when my daughter and son-in-law moved to Tulsa in 2011, we added them to the group. We have four season passes and when the grandkids are in town, we buy extra seats.

What led to you becoming a 66ers season ticket holder?
After I was in the Navy, I brought my wife Jolene to Tulsa from Los Angeles. We started attending local basketball a few years later when the CBA came to Tulsa. That team moved away in the early 90’s, so we were jazzed when the 66ers came to town a decade later. We have so much fun, we keep coming back.

What is your favorite part of 66ers games?
Whew, that’s like asking a mother which child is her favorite. I get the biggest kick during breaks to the hoop, I guess. I like a good inside game. Jolene is always rooting for the three-point shots. It’s when the team is being a team that gets us excited. Dunks are exciting, but the pass out to the corner for the unguarded three-point shot, properly executed, can elicit the same excitement.

Who are some players you’ve enjoyed watching play for the 66ers?
We loved Marcus Lewis. We loved Larry Owens. Who can forget Moses Ehambe? Local players that brought excitement to the games. This past season, Dominique Sutton kept us on our feet with his dunks and Andy Rautins sank a gazillion treys. Watching Daniel Orton grow as a player, from college to the D-League into the NBA…that adds to the experience when you see them later in their careers. This past season had such a great group of guys, it’s hard to pick.

Who are some Oklahoma City Thunder assignment players that have impressed you?
My son-in-law is from Kentucky, so this year when we had DeAndre Liggins and Daniel Orton playing, drafted out of the University of Kentucky, our group was crazy! Jeremy Lamb has a smooth quickness to the basket and eludes his opponent seemingly at will.

What are your thoughts on the level of play in the NBA Development League?
I’ve watched half-a-dozen Thunder players from those stands. Guys are being called-up to the NBA regularly. It’s really a dilemma for us as we celebrate when our players are called-up, but are saddened that we’ve lost them. The rule change that allows free movement between the Thunder and Tulsa 66ers means we see Thunder players more often as they work on some aspect of their game or rehab from injury. This is pro ball, no doubt.

What are some of your favorite parts about the 66ers game-night entertainment?
We love the “spirit” bands that come from the local high schools. Sometimes there is a drum line from one of the schools and they’ll play after the game as the fans are leaving. We never leave before they finish their performance. Of course, who doesn’t like the OKC Thunder halftime show with the trampolines when Rumble comes to town?