It takes precision and form to ensure maximum enjoyment down a snow slide. Thunder rookie, Darius Bazley took this job very seriously at Winterfest in Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark as he provided a push to the snow tubers at the launching point of the 145-foot snow slide. One-by-one, Bazley brought the tubers to the edge of the launch pad and in one grand heave, propelled the tube down the hill. Some tubers cascaded in a straight line, others in spiraling circles but one thing they all had in common, they all went really fast.
“When you do something like that, it really does take technique and form,” noted Bazley. “I just got the maximum spin for them and they went really, really fast down so it takes a lot of technique.”
With the help of Thunder guard Shai Gilgeous-Alexander and center Mike Muscala, the thrill seekers at Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark were surprised with wristbands, hot chocolate and pictures from the Thunder trio as they enjoyed the festivities of the Winterfest.
For Muscala, who was stationed at the concession stand, the event reminded him of growing up in Minnesota during the frigid winters. The only difference, Muscala noted, was the mild 47-degree forecast on Monday with clear, sunny skies and no imminent threat of snow of any kind.
“Snowball fights, tubing, sledding, this is bringing back a lot of memories,” said Muscala. “It’s great, the sun is shining there’s literally not a cloud in the sky. Everyone seems like they’re having a really fun time too.”
The Thunder trio had the chance to help create those same type of lasting memories for all those in attendance at Winterfest. Whether they got a wristband from Gilgeous-Alexander, a piping-hot chocolate from Muscala or a powerful push down the snow slide from Bazley, a little extra excitement radiated from the Winter Wonderland.
“It just spreads the joy of Thunder basketball and everything it stands for,” said Muscala. “It’s everything. The fans are everything for us as athletes, as an organization and as a league. Any positive impact we can have in events like this today it means a lot.”