How Scott Brooks Spent His Offseason

If he wasn’t crisscrossing the country to visit players or planning for his first training camp as a head coach, Scott Brooks was spending quality time with his wife and kids this summer.

Whether he was back in his native California, where he visited relatives and in-laws, or here in Oklahoma, where he’s become more familiar with the community, his role as a family man never stopped.

But neither did his responsibilities as the Thunder’s head coach.

Brooks has spent a large chunk of time working from the team’s practice facility in Edmond this summer. He’s also been to Orlando and Las Vegas for Summer Leagues and back to Las Vegas to watch Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook and Jeff Green partake in the Team USA Basketball minicamp and for another training camp with Serge Ibaka and James Harden.

Brooks returned to Oklahoma basically for good in August.

Ask him how he spent his summer minus all his coaching duties, and he’ll talk about his wife, Sherry, son, Chance, and daughter, Lexi.

“It’s always fun to be with my kids,” Brooks said recently. “Either we will have a checker tournament or go bike riding or skate boarding or if we’re in California we go to the beach and mess around with the waves. I’m really committed to my kids and I love being with them and sharing memories with them. Just being with them, that’s the highlight.”

There were plenty more highlights, though.

There was the three-hour arts and crafts class he took with Lexi back in California, where the two made several paintings. There were the low-key nights when the family made S’mores.

And now that the kids are back in school, Brooks has a new challenge ahead of him: helping Chance prepare for his middle school football team. Chance, who just started the seventh grade, will play wide receiver and defensive back.

“You can tell that I’ve conformed to the Oklahoma lifestyle,” Brooks said. “My son is playing football this year for the first time. He’s never played football. I don’t even remember myself playing. I feel bad, like I’m a horrible dad – I’ve never even thrown a football to him before. Now this last week I’ve probably played catch with him six days out of seven, and prior to that I don’t ever remember throwing a football to him. Obviously I’ve played basketball and baseball with him when he was young but now he’s on the football team. It’s pretty cool to see that.”

And with training camp less than a month away, Brooks can’t help but run into Thunder fans when he’s out around town.

On Wednesday, for example, he was at a local City Bites when an employee and several customers stopped to wish him good luck on the upcoming season.

“This is a great community,” he said. “I’m excited about the opportunity that Clay (Bennett) and the ownership group and Sam (Presti) has given me. And you can see the excitement. Last summer, yeah, you might see a few Thunder hats, a couple of t-shirts every now and then. But now you see a lot more hats and people are excited about us being in town.”

Contact Chris Silva