Anthony Slater
Sports Thunder Beat Writer
Anthony Slater started on the Thunder beat in the summer of 2013, joining after two years as'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.

  • OKC Thunder: Kevin Durant goes in-depth on his friendship with Russell Westbrook

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Fri, Nov 20, 2015

    Russell Westbrook presented Kevin Durant into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame on Thursday night, highlighting the strong bond that's been developed over the last eight years between the two. Off the event, I wrote about their friendship, which you can read by clicking here. For the article, I sat down with Durant earlier this week. With his free agency swirling over the season and his health paramount, KD's been hesitant to do one-on-one interviews this season. But on this subject, when told it was about Westbrook, he agreed, which should tell you how he feels about the guy. Here's the unfiltered transcript: Do you remember your first meeting, first impression of Russ?  Yeah, I was

  • OKC Thunder: Russell Westbrook presents Kevin Durant into Oklahoma Hall of Fame, highlighting their friendship

    By Anthony Slater, Staff Writer | Updated: Thu, Nov 19, 2015

    Durant’s selection as Westbrook as his presenter highlighted an eight-year friendship between the two that sprouted through basketball but has extended so far beyond it.

  • OKC Thunder: Transcript of Kevin Durant's Hall of Fame induction speech

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Thu, Nov 19, 2015

    Kevin Durant was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame on Thursday night in Tulsa. Here is a transcript of his speech: "I appreciate it, all the kind words. I'll tell you a story. When I first got the call (the franchise was moving to Oklahoma), I was actually on the University of Texas. To come here and to live in Oklahoma, I didn't know what to think. When I came here, I got to the airport and there was nobody there. Then I went to the hotel and there was nobody in the streets. Then I stayed in the Skirvin and I heard it was haunted. So I said, that's a rough start. But as time went on, I started to realize the core values of Oklahomans. Hard work, resiliency, humility. It made me a better man and it made me a better

  • OKC Thunder: Russell Westbrook leads Thunder to needed win over wounded Pelicans in spotty effort

    Anthony Slater | Published: Wed, Nov 18, 2015

    Russell Westbrook had 43 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, and the Oklahoma City Thunder recovered from a slow start to beat the injury-depleted New Orleans Pelicans 110-103 on Wednesday night.

  • Live Coverage: Thunder vs. Pelicans

    From Staff Reports | Updated: Wed, Nov 18, 2015

    Follow up-to-the-minute updates on tonight's Thunder-Pelicans game from our Thunder coverage team and more from around the web.

  • OKC Thunder: Kendrick Perkins left behind a legacy in Oklahoma City

    By Anthony Slater Staff Writer | Updated: Tue, Nov 17, 2015

    On Wednesday night, the Pelicans visit Oklahoma City. Perkins signed with New Orleans this offseason.

  • OU basketball: Buddy Hield, Jordan Woodard hit key shots late as Sooners edge Memphis in season opener

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Tue, Nov 17, 2015

    Buddy Hield scored 30 points and No. 8 Oklahoma held off Memphis 84-78 on Tuesday in the Sooners' season-opening game.

  • OKC Thunder: Mario Chalmers exposes the Thunder’s perimeter defense as Memphis tops OKC

    By Anthony Slater | Published: Mon, Nov 16, 2015

    Newcomer Mario Chalmers scored 16 of his season-high 29 points in the fourth quarter Monday night and the Memphis Grizzlies held on for a 122-114 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder.

  • OKC Thunder journal: Andre Roberson sits out the Thunder loss in Memphis with the flu

    By Anthony Slater, Staff Writer | Published: Mon, Nov 16, 2015

    In his place, coach Billy Donovan started Kyle Singler, saying he wanted length on the floor to combat with Grizzlies starting small forward Jeff Green.

  • Live Coverage: Thunder at Grizzlies

    From Staff Reports | Updated: Mon, Nov 16, 2015

    Russell Westbrook and the Thunder are looking to bounce back against Memphis after a home loss to Boston on Sunday night. Follow up-to-the-minute updates on tonight's game from Thunder writer Anthony Slater and more from around the web.

  • OKC Thunder: Offense stagnates, bench struggles in Thunder’s 100-85 home loss to the Celtics

    By Anthony Slater | Updated: Sun, Nov 15, 2015

    Credit the Celtics, who confidently strolled into OKC with a physical mentality, a bulldog point guard — former Oklahoma State star Marcus Smart — and a tricky zone scheme that threw the Thunder completely out of rhythm in the second half.

  • OKC Thunder: Kevin Durant talks about his recovery from a hamstring strain

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Sun, Nov 15, 2015

    Kevin Durant met with the media before the Thunder's Sunday game against the Celtics, discussing his ongoing rehab for his left hamstring strain. Here's the Q&A session with Durant: What kind of things are you doing for it? Just a lot of treatment, trying to strengthen everything up. Haven't been on the practice floor yet, just been in the weight room and on the training table. How do you make sure your spirits stay up and you stay positive? When you look at the grand scheme of things, I'm breathing, my Mom is alright, my family's good. It's a little hamstring strain. I don't have to get surgery again, I don't have to go through that process again.

  • Live Coverage: Thunder vs. Celtics

    From Staff Reports | Updated: Sun, Nov 15, 2015

    The Thunder is at home against Boston in search of its fourth straight win. Follow up-to-the-minute updates on tonight's game from our Thunder coverage team and more from around the web.

  • OKC Thunder: Dion Waiters denies report he's hoping to play for hometown 76ers

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Sun, Nov 15, 2015

    Following the Thunder's recent win over the Philadelphia 76ers, a report from the Philadelphia Inquirer sited an unnamed source saying that Waiters has his eyes set on playing for his hometown team in the near future. “He wants to come home,” the source was quoted as telling the paper. “Plus, he knows that he could be the missing shooting guard they need. And he could possibility get a (very lucrative) contract with the Sixers.” After failing to reach an extension before the Nov. 2 deadline, Waiters will be a restricted free agent this summer. The Thunder has expressed interest in keeping the emerging shooting guard, who has played well in his bench role early this season.

  • OKC Thunder: Previewing the Thunder's game Sunday against the Boston Celtics

    By Anthony Slater Staff Writer | Published: Sun, Nov 15, 2015

    The Oklahoman's Anthony Slater previews the Oklahoma City Thunder's game Sunday at home against the Boston Celtics: When: 6 p.m. CT on Sunday Where: Chesapeake Energy Arena, OKC TV: FSN Oklahoma Radio: WWLS-AM 640/98.1 FM Three Things to know • Russell Westbrook's current streak of six consecutive 10-plus assist games is one short of his career longest streak. Over the past six seasons, it's tied for the NBA's 13th longest streak. • After missing three games with a sprained left big toe, former Oklahoma State guard Marcus Smart has returned to the Celtics lineup. He averages 9.8 points in five games. • Entering Saturday, the Thunder's 6-3 record was third in the Western

  • OKC Thunder Journal: OKC leads the NBA in blocked shots

    By Anthony Slater Staff Writer | Published: Sat, Nov 14, 2015

    Jahlil Okafor entered Friday night's game with the Oklahoma City Thunder tops among rookies in scoring, averaging 20.6 points per game on a robust 50.7 percent shooting. His transition to the NBA had gone without on-court hiccups. Then he ran into Serge Ibaka and the Thunder's stout interior defense. On Friday, Okafor was held to six points on 3-of-18 shooting. His shot was blocked five times. He looked overwhelmed. But he's not alone this season. Led by Ibaka, the Thunder big men have stonewalled a number of opponents. OKC entered Saturday averaging a league-best 8.1 blocks per game. No other team in the Western Conference is averaging more than 6.3. Against the Sixers, the Thunder had 13. Steven Adams had three.

  • OKC Thunder journal: Anthony Morrow replaces the injured Kevin Durant in the starting lineup and plays well | Updated: Fri, Nov 13, 2015

    On Friday night, Billy Donovan surprisingly started Morrow in Durant’s place. The Thunder’s sharpshooter lost his usual playing time and then his rhythm in the past week, appearing only in spurts and missing his last six 3s.

  • Live Coverage: Thunder vs. Sixers

    From Staff Reports | Updated: Fri, Nov 13, 2015

    The Thunder is at home against Philadelphia tonight. Follow up-to-the-minute updates from our Thunder coverage team and more from around the web.

  • Video flashback: Wolves rookie Karl Anthony-Towns interviews Kevin a high school freshman

    Anthony Slater | Updated: Fri, Nov 13, 2015

    Timberwolves rookie Karl Anthony-Towns, the most recent No. 1 overall pick, has burst onto the NBA scene, flashing an impressively polished game for a 19-year-old. He's already battling and holding his own against the league's best stars. But not long ago, he idolized them. On Thursday night, Minnesota hosted the Warriors in a nationally televised game. As part of the broadcast, TNT dug up a flashback video of Towns, five years ago, interviewing the Thunder's Kevin Durant before a game in Philadelphia, calling KD one of his 'idols.

  • OKC Thunder: Early returns are positive for Enes Kanter and his big contract

    By Anthony Slater Staff Writer | Published: Thu, Nov 12, 2015

    Enes Kanter signed a max offer sheet with Portland this offseason, giving the Thunder three days to pick between two options — match or decline. Keep Kanter or don't. The argument against was simple. It was a four-year, $70 million overpay that included a dreaded player option at the back end. Even in a market flush with escalating money, the long-term pact seemed steep for a one-sided, defensively challenged skill set. But it was never much of a choice. The Thunder's eventual decision to match wasn't just a smart one, but an obvious one and, to them, the only one. The alternatives made it so. Let's say OKC, entering a crucial year in the franchise's history, declined to match, choosing to go cheaper on a big man.

Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 11:48:17 PM CST Stan Van Gundy, never afraid to roast his team, killed Detroit's rebounding against OKC tonight
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 11:41:23 PM CST It was an unpleasant homecoming for Reggie Jackson. Recap from OKC:
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 10:37:34 PM CST Thunder defense a quiet key tonight. Pistons held to 32 points on 11-of-46 shooting (24%) in the second half.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 10:13:15 PM CST Here's the exchange between @ErikHorneOK and Russell Westbrook on Reggie Jackson: "Who?"
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 10:10:42 PM CST Reggie Jackson on boos cont... "They wouldn’t boo me if I didn’t do anything and build some memories here."
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 10:10:19 PM CST Reggie Jackson on the boos: "I love to be hated. It’s flattering, the greatest honor of them all. It’s love and spite all at the same time."
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 10:03:38 PM CST Kevin Durant called Andre Drummond the Pistons "best player" and Kentavious Caldwell-Pope Detroit's "second best player" CC: Reggie Jackson.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:56:56 PM CST Russell Westbrook on Reggie Jackson: "Just another player on another team."
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:21:23 PM CST Best game of the year for Kevin Durant: 34 points, 13 rebounds, 5 assists. Led OKC to win during an off-night for Westbrook.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:20:31 PM CST Final: Thunder 103, Pistons 87. That's four straight wins for OKC. Road trip coming: at Atlanta, at Miami.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:11:49 PM CST Westbrook's 11th turnover is an offensive foul that fouls him out of the game.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:11:12 PM CST 10 turnovers for Westbrook. Just doesn't have his handle tonight.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:07:05 PM CST Kevin Durant from 3 his last four games: 14-of-24.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:04:50 PM CST Huge factor: Thunder outrebounding Detroit 49-33. Teams came into this game #1 and #2 in the league in rebounding.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 09:04:11 PM CST Enes Kanter outworking Andre Drummond on the glass in this fourth quarter. Drummond averages 18 rebs, only has 6.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 08:58:19 PM CST Nice stretch from D.J. Augustin: and-1, stepback 3, set-up assist for Ibaka J. OKC extends lead to 11 with Durant/Westbrook on bench.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 08:48:50 PM CST Great defensive quarter for the Thunder. Held Detroit to 16 points on 5-of-24 shooting. Up five heading to fourth.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 08:46:49 PM CST @BrandonDean85 At a bad angle, but I assume either Jackson or whoever is chirping. Maybe Morris.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 08:45:06 PM CST Kevin Durant up to 31 points, 11 rebounds late in the third quarter.
Anthony Slater Fri, Nov. 27 2015 08:38:16 PM CST The play did result in Russell Westbrook's fourth foul. So he did have to come out.