For years, our loveable and sometimes great but often feeble NBA team has played in a building known as the Chesapeake Energy Arena. There was a time when it was called the Ford Center and mostly hosted big live concerts with terrible sound. The sound is still terrible after all these years, but acoustics are acoustics. I'm there for the basketball.
But now there's a shake-up that will rock the building harder than the house DJ playing a snippet of 'The Ocean' during a Poku 3-pointer. From KFOR:
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR)- The next time you head to an Oklahoma City Thunder game, you may not be going into the Chesapeake Energy Arena.
On Tuesday, the Oklahoma City Thunder announced that the team is in the process of working to secure a new naming rights partner for the arena.
Chesapeake Energy Corporation announced that part of its restructuring plan, it is terminating its arena naming rights agreement with the team, effective immediately.
With Chesapeake tanking harder than the Thunder is currently, I'm honestly surprised this didn't happen earlier. But someone needs to take up the mantle and support this building that everybody in Oklahoma City paid for and is quite capable of generating its own income.
Right now, we're hearing PayCom will be the sponsor of the arena, but if that falls through, these would be good choices:
Here are some ideas:
The Del Rancho Dome
Now hear me out, this one is a stretch. There are only three Del Ranchos surviving in Oklahoma City, and they're probably clinging on for dear life. But the chicken-fried steak is emblematic of our state, and perhaps if they could scrape up the money to get their name on the Thunder Dome, it would be enough of a push to get that once thriving chain back in the green.
Epic Charter Schools Downtown Campus
Epic is corrupt enough to somehow find a way to get the cash to become the official sponsor of the arena. As a bonus, they'd get to use the facilities for field trips and teach the kids how to run the concession stands!
The Mayor David Holt Arena
Our cool young mayor will never pass up an opportunity to show his face when he wants to take credit for something. Even though he had no involvement in the MAPS project that constructed a building intended to steal an NBA team, he'd love to leave his mark on it. After a few generations, people would just believe he was on the team.
The Mathis Brother Center
If they go this route, I bet the ushers will begin aggressively following around fans to make sure they find the seat they're looking for.
Patricia's Field House
This would be great just so we can hear the announcers say "We're live tonight from the Dildo Dome for tonight's clash between the Thunder and Spurs. Michael, what do you think about this matchup?"
The Bob Mills News 9 Storm Trackers Arena
This is the obvious one. There needs to be a real thematic connection with the team and Oklahoma, and what better direction to go with would be local weather people? Whenever Shai hits a mid-range jumper, the arena can play a soundboard drop from Val Castor. The possibilities are endless, and it would also be so bewildering to away teams that it would improve our home-court advantage.
If you think the lines at the concessions stand are long now, just wait until Braum's starts running them! Is missing the second quarter worth paying $25 for a Braum's cheeseburger, fries and Butterfinger mix? Probably.
There's plenty more possibilities, so let us know your ideas in the comments.