A Shared Vision: Match Made in OKC
Story by Jimmy Do | okcthunder.com
How about a brand new Oklahoma City Thunder jersey to cement a long-standing courtship?
A coy exchange of tweets involving one heart emoji and one lightning emoji made some noise before the sun was up on Friday.
Thunder VPs made the rounds on morning news shows to spread the word. The big LED screen outside Chesapeake Energy Arena flashed images of Steven Adams, Jerami Grant and Terrance Ferguson donning the new look.
As a nod to the shared core values and hometown roots, the jersey sponsorship between the Thunder and Love's Travel Stop was made official to tipoff the St. Patrick's Day weekend.
“The Love family and organization represent all that is truly good in Oklahoma,” said Oklahoma City Thunder Chairman Clay Bennett. “The Thunder is honored to expand our long-standing relationship with them to now include representation on our jersey. It's a significant alignment of two organizations that share a deep and meaningful commitment to our community and the people we serve.”
“As we continue to grow our network of travel stops along our nation’s highways, expanding the Love’s partnership with the Oklahoma City Thunder in this way helps elevate our brand to an even broader audience,” said Love’s Founder and Executive Chairman Tom Love. “Our core values align with the Thunder’s, and we are proud to support our hometown team and extend that pride across the country.”
From the Instagram post below, the special partnership was built on the shared vision of family, innovation, work ethic and team work.
As part of the celebration, the Thunder and Love's hosted 150 children from the Boys & Girls Club and the YMCA to join in on the fun with a hoops clinic and carnival games complete with Thunder entertainers to provide the trademark game night experience.
Measuring at 61 feet long and 9.5 feet wide, the Love's tanker truck racked up its fair share of photos ops near the court inside the arena.
For Thunder guards Raymond Felton and Dennis Schröder, the excitement and meaning of the day reiterated what the Thunder organization was all about.
“It’s about community, family and coming together as one. That’s what I love about this organization,” said Felton. “I feel like I’m at home and I love it.”
Whether cheering from Loud City or creating memories from the Love's Kiss Cam on the big screen, Thunder fans have seen and grown up with the striking echo heart logo on game nights from the beginning of Thunder basketball in 2008.
And thanks to the expanded partnership, that familiar Love’s logo is now part of the Thunder experience more than ever.
"We wanted to find the right partner that strategically aligned with what we stand for," said Dan Mahoney, Thunder vice president of broadcasting and corporate communications. "Love's is exactly that. The heart on the heart is so special here."
“It's a significant alignment of two organizations that share a deep and meaningful commitment to our community and the people we serve.”
Oklahoma City Thunder Chairman Clay Bennett
When you get to wear Jerami Grant's new jersey before he does!
KOCO Meteorologist Shelby Hays via Twitter @KOCOShelby