OKC Thunder Christmas Day Round Table – memories, gifts and resolutions

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November 3, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) shoots a technical foul shot as Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) looks on during the second quarter at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

November 3, 2016; Oakland, CA, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder guard Russell Westbrook (0) shoots a technical foul shot as Golden State Warriors forward Kevin Durant (35) looks on during the second quarter at Oracle Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Well the big day is finally here as the OKC Thunder host the Wolves as part of the NBA Christmas Day extravaganza. A third of the way into the season the team at Thunderous Intentions decided it was perfect timing for a Holiday Round Table session.

In this three part series the Thunderous Intentions Team offers thoughts on all things OKC Thunder.   Expect to find answers on what cyborg Russell Westbrook will accomplish, gifts we’d give the the team, trade suggestions and copious Christmas themed questions. In the final part of the series you’ll learn a lot about our scribes as they offer opinions on:

  • OKC’s most anticipated game this season
  • Which teams should have be on the NBA Christmas schedule
  • Favorite memories of past Christmas games
  • Boxing Day Thunder returns
  • New Year resolutions

With that, I give you the final segment of the series:

Merry Christmas!

When the NBA released the Christmas Day schedule many hoped for an opponent featuring a certain small forward. Instead fans will have to wait until Feb.11th. Is that the most anticipated OKC game in your memory?

The team was split about 50-50 here:

Heather Koontz: Here’s the thing: I’ve never been a Kevin Durant fan. I just couldn’t convince myself to like him. I was always a Westbrook fan, and will be to the end. So for me, I was actually hoping the Christmas day game wouldn’t be against Golden State. The Timberwolves may not be as exciting for the rest of OKC’s fans, but I’ll be happy.

Rich Condon: No, to me it’s not. Even though KD burned us all by leaving, having a chance to play for it all in 2011 still means more than a “revenge game.” Barely.

RELATED CONTENT: Opinions Vary, but who does Westbrook think he is?

Joshua Lea:  Yes, I would say so. It’s somewhat reminiscent of when the Los Angeles Lakers came to town back in 2011. This is a much bigger deal because of what “he who should not be named” did for this city. However, the city and the Thunder will likely attempt to view this as just another game.

Cole Hixon: No I don’t think so. I’ll say Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals last year. There was only a couple days of anticipation to build up, but it was a chance to close out the best regular season team of all time, on your home court, go to the finals and give Kevin Durant a reason to stay.

Yaman Khabbaz: This is easily the most anticipated regular season game on the OKC Thunder schedule. The tension in it is going to be immense. I expect a hostile crowd directing plenty of abuse towards a certain DC born small forward. The arena will be shaking from the noise inside of it during the game. 100% of the fanbase is certainly waiting impatiently for that game.

Eric Snyder: Game 7 against the Warriors in the 15-16 Playoffs is the most anticipated Thunder game in history to me. With a Thunder win they would have been a match-up nightmare for the Cavs. The game this year means very little in the long run. Yet, if the Thunder would have won the West last year, Durant is probably still on this team.

Tony Heim: Not even close, it’s honestly the least anticipated matchup in recent memory for me. I don’t want to watch KD play in the Peake in a different uniform. If they played on Christmas it would honestly ruin the day for me. That game is going to be excruciating to watch.

Chris Hughes: I think so. Especially for me as a OKC Thunder fan only two or three years, I don’t think there’s been a game THAT anticipated in my time following the team. I expect some hostility for sure, but I’m hoping the team can remain professional else it wouldn’t surprise me if the Warriors thumped us again.

Casimir Cuffy: I think the Warriors vs Thunder game in OKC will definitely be the most anticipated in OKC’s short history. I fully expect a lop sided game though, unless Presti makes a big move before that game, which is actually two weeks before the trade deadline.

Jeremy Lambert: Yes, but I think it’s going to end badly. We already saw the Warriors destroy OKC once. The Warriors have gotten better since that point. Durant is going to score a lot, he’s going to yuck it up with Draymond, and it’s just going to be painful to watch.

Tamberlyn Richardson: Historically, I think May 31st, 2012 was the most anticipated game ever. Perhaps because the Thunder trailed 0-2 in the Western Conference Finals and then went on to sweep the next 4 games versus the Spurs to earn their first finals berth. There have been other games such as last post season’s game 6  when OKC’s failure to capitalize on an early  3-1 series lead inevitably resulted in long term side effects. With that I’d term the February 11th game as more significant from an emotional standpoint since Oklahomans and Thunder fans felt the angst of rejection and will no doubt voice that displeasure.

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