Anthony Slater's articles from The Oklahoman

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Thunder sign undrafted free agent Michal Qualls to deal; expected to play with Blue

    BY ANTHONY SLATER AND ERIK HORNE   | Published: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    By the end of his junior season at Arkansas, Michael Qualls was viewed as a sure-fire second round pick. But during a pre-draft workout in Phoenix earlier this month, Qualls came down awkwardly on a dunk attempt and tore his ACL. He went undrafted. The Thunder might benefit from that unfortunate...

  • NBA Free Agency Primer

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    Check your data plans, set mobile alerts, refresh Twitter whenever possible. NBA free agency is upon us and, like every July, there are some important names in play.

  • Report: Thunder, Enes Kanter plan Wednesday free agency meeting in Chicago

    Anthony Slater | Published: Tue, Jun 30, 2015

    Ever since trading for Enes Kanter at the deadline last February, the Thunder has maintained that its biggest offseason priority would be retaining him on the open market. As free agency nears, OKC seems to be serious about that proclamation. Real GM’s Shams Charainia is reporting that...

  • OKC Thunder: Five Thunder-related storylines heading into free agency

    Anthony Slater Staff Writer | Published: Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    OKC Thunder: Five Thunder-related storylines heading into free agency Open season on the NBA marketplace strikes a minute after midnight on Wednesday with a batch of well-known pieces up for grabs. In the past, while a majority of the league shuffled its decks in July, the Thunder has...

  • Thunder Buddies Podcast: Recapping the draft and previewing NBA free agency

    Anthony Slater | Published: Mon, Jun 29, 2015

    Welcome to the home of our Thunder Buddies podcast, named, in part, from Universal Studio’s highly-acclaimed comedy ‘Ted’, but inspired by our continued hope for wall-to-wall coverage of the Thunder. Below is our list of episodes (click the link to listen). If you prefer iTunes for your...

  • OKC Thunder: Meet the family that guided Cameron Payne to this monumental moment

    BY ANTHONY SLATER Staff Writer aslater@opubco.com | Published: Sun, Jun 28, 2015

    During Cameron Payne’s first season at Murray State, his mother, Leshawn, didn’t feel like herself in the stands. All throughout Cam’s formative basketball years, she’d captained his team’s cheer sections, with pom-poms as her weapon of choice. “In high school, when they went to the state, I...

  • OKC Thunder notebook: Cameron Payne recalls his memorable pre-draft workout in Oklahoma City

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Sat, Jun 27, 2015

    Because Payne had a couple days before his next workout, he decided to stick around OKC for another day. He was introduced to the Thunder staff and toured the lush facility.

  • OKC Thunder: Sam Presti unconcerned about Cameron Payne’s small school background

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    Cameron Payne glanced at the list of draft picks in attendance on Thursday night, followed by the college they attended – Kentucky, Duke, Ohio State, Wisconsin, Arizona, Kentucky again. “It’s kind of funny,” Payne said. “When I looked at the green room list at every single one of those (big...

  • OKC Thunder: Undrafted Duke guard Quinn Cook expected to play on Thunder summer league team

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    Seventeen seniors were selected during Thursday night’s NBA Draft. None of them were named Quinn Cook, the four-year guard who helped lead Duke to a national championship with his steady play. And it looks like the Thunder may benefit. Real GM’s Shams Charania is reporting that Cook has agreed...

  • Thunder notebook: Sam Presti calls Cameron Payne's injury a 'short-term situation'

    BY ANTHONY SLATER Staff Writer aslater@opubco.com | Published: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    Because of a finger fracture suffered during a pre-draft workout, Thunder first round pick Cameron Payne is not expected to participate in summer league.

  • OKC Thunder: Former Oklahoma State center Mike Cobbins to play for Thunder's summer league team

    Anthony Slater | Published: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    Mike Cobbins recently completed a solid career at Oklahoma State, serving as the Cowboys’ lanky rim protector and occasional scorer the past few seasons. The first stop in his professional career? Just an hour down the road. Cobbins went undrafted on Thursday night, but will join the Thunder’s...

  • OKC Thunder: Sam Presti acknowledges passing of Bob Barry Jr. with lengthy opening statement

    Anthony Slater | Published: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    As Thursday night turned into Friday morning, Sam Presti finally emerged from his draft night war room, a touch after midnight, to discuss the newest members of the Thunder. But before fielding questions, Presti wanted to acknowledge the recent passing of KFOR sports anchor Bob Barry...

  • OKC Thunder notebook: Cameron Payne unlikely to play in summer league with fractured finger

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Fri, Jun 26, 2015

    During a recent pre-draft workout with the Denver Nuggets, new Thunder guard Cameron Payne fractured the ring finger on his right (non-shooting) hand. The injury is not considered serious. Surgery isn’t needed. But the expected three-week recovery time means it is unlikely Payne will be able...

  • OKC Thunder: Confident Cameron Payne excited to join the Thunder

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Thu, Jun 25, 2015

    From the fitted navy blue suit jacket to the white dress pants to the floral pocket pin to the blindingly shiny watch, Cameron Payne’s draft night outfit screamed confidence. Much like the Thunder’s established star point guard, its newest point guard fancies himself as a stylish dude. “I...

  • Q&A: Thunder draft pick Cameron Payne talks draft night, his fit in OKC and more

    Anthony Slater | Published: Thu, Jun 25, 2015

    Moments after he was selected 14th overall by the Thunder on Thursday night, Cameron Payne stepped off the stage, stared at a national TV audience and confidently referred to himself in third person. “I can be the next success because I’m coming in with a chip on my shoulder,” he said. “There is...



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Anthony Slater


Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as NewsOK.com's lead sports blogger and web editor. A native Californian, Slater attended Sonoma State for two years before transferring to Oklahoma State in 2010 and graduating in 2012. He's a hoops fanatic and, this past season, served as a key contributor to The Oklahoman's NBA coverage, consistently blogging about the Thunder and attending nearly every home game.