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Wednesday, May 23rd, 2012 at 1:15 pm  |  8 responses

OKC Thunder to Eliminate ‘Watch Parties’ Following Shootings?


Gunfire marred the celebration on Monday night, following the OKC Thunder’s Game 5 win over the Los Angeles Lakers. And that ugly incident has the team and city seriously considering major changes (if not outright elimination) of the popular watch parties for fans outside the arena. Per the Oklahoman: “At least eight people were wounded by gunfire, and a pregnant woman was injured following the Thunder’s 106-90 playoff victory over the Los Angeles Lakers in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals Monday night. Shots were fired about three blocks east of a Thunder Alley watch party, which occupied Reno Avenue between Chesapeake Arena and the Cox Convention Center. ‘This ever-growing game night crowd that gathers on the street outside the building, that can’t continue,’ Oklahoma City Mayor Mick Cornett said Tuesday. ‘There are too many public safety concerns. As much as we love the expression of enthusiasm, it’s no longer a workable situation.’ Thunder Alley originally was an occasional pregame party that included interactive games, concessions, and merchandise. It began three hours before tipoff and would shut down once the game started. During this year’s playoffs, a watch party was added and fans were invited to bring chairs and blankets to Thunder Alley to view the game on a new video display board — 74 feet tall by 20 feet wide — that was mounted on the northwest side of Chesapeake Arena during recent renovations to the facility. Crowds initially consisted of 2,000-3,000 people watching the game outside the arena, but swelled to an estimated 6,000-7,000 people on Monday night to watch the Thunder eliminate the Lakers and advance to the Western Conference Finals against the San Antonio Spurs.”

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  • LA Huey

    Well, if people don’t value their lives enough to avoid the “parties” on their own accord…

  • OKC FAN

    This had NOTHING to do with the game. It had to do with punk ass gangsters at Sonic. Learn to use a fist instead of a gun.

  • Heals

    Damn shame that a couple idiots had to ruin what was a really good thing for thousands…

  • Brett

    Your sources are outdated, they’ve already said they will continue doing it. But changes will be made.

  • Carieta

    We should not cut out the Thunder Alley just because something
    happenned down @ the Sonic in BRICKTOWN. This was not pertain-
    ing to the game.

  • http://mustardseedchef@yahoo.com Sonny0381

    Where are the parents of these kids? I promise you at that young of an age the parents should take the majority of the responsibility. from a young age on. There will always be kids & adults that act like animals. Shootings shouldn’t be tolerated. if convicted throw the book at them. The people of OKC should be able to gather. How bout the Cox center? Controlled. I think it could be done. Ok , Mayor & Council individuals. Be smart. THUNDER UP.

  • LA Huey

    Wow, its gets real at Sonic, huh? No wonder you can’t find one here in western Washington.

  • Kat

    This is bullcrap!!! My family has been enjoying Thunder alley for a couple of seasons now and the watch parties are the greatest. So I suggest you keep your punk ass kids at home under your supervision or be with them at all times. It is always someone to ruin it for the rest of us good sumaritans. I heard no more watch parties which SUCKS!!! Maybe we could all watch it somewhere at the cox center when other stuff wasn’t going on! Let’s go Thunder! Dont take the Thunder away from 6000 of our closest friends because of one or two thugs!!!

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