Darnell Mayberry
Sports Assist Editor/ NBA Coordinator

Darnell Mayberry grew up in Langston, Okla. and is now in his third stint in the Sooner state. After a year and a half at Bishop McGuinness High, he finished his prep years in Falls Church, Va., before graduating from Norfolk State University in 2004.

Mayberry joined The Oklahoman’s sports staff in 2005 after a year at the Akron Beacon Journal, where he covered the University of Akron men’s basketball team, high schools and recruiting. Since arriving at The Oklahoman, Mayberry has become the leading authority on the NBA as the only traveling media member and the only reporter to cover every NBA game ever played in Oklahoma City.

He served as the paper’s beat writer on the New Orleans/Oklahoma City Hornets from 2005-07, broke the news of the Seattle SuperSonics’ settlement negotiations with the City of Seattle in the summer of 2008, a development that allowed the team to relocate to Oklahoma, and has covered the Thunder since the franchise’s inception.

Mayberry and his wife, Courtney, were married in 2010 and live in Oklahoma City.

  • OKC Thunder: View the Thunder's 2015-16 home schedule

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY Staff Writer dmayberry@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Aug 12, 2015

    NBA SCHEDULE -- The Oklahoman's Darnell Mayberry has obtained a copy of the Oklahoma City Thunder's 2015-16 home schedule.

  • Big games show Thunder is still a marquee NBA team

    FROM STAFF REPORTS | Updated: Tue, Aug 11, 2015

    NBA SCHEDULE -- The Thunder has the Spurs to start and the Bulls on Christmas Day. Jenni Carlson and Darnell Mayberry talk about what those games mean and how they'll affect the Thunder and its fan base.

  • Thunder to open regular season against Spurs, will host Bulls on Christmas

    Darnell Mayberry | Updated: Tue, Aug 11, 2015

    The Thunder will open the 2015-16 season against LaMarcus Aldridge and the new-look San Antonio Spurs on Wednesday, Oct. 28, The Oklahoman has learned. It will mark the second time in four seasons that OKC has opened its season against the rival Spurs. The Thunder lost to the Spurs by two in San Antonio to […]

  • Jeff Van Gundy vouches for the job Scott Brooks did in Oklahoma City

    Darnell Mayberry | Updated: Sun, Aug 9, 2015

    I wrote about Thunder coach Billy Donovan’s playing days in Sunday’s editions of The Oklahoman. It was part two of our five-part series looking at Donovan from his childhood through his illustrious career at Florida. You can read part one, written by Anthony Slater, here. Part two is here, along with a sidebar on Donovan’s […]

  • A boy and a dream: How Billy Donovan's childhood goal turned him into a legendary ballplayer

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sat, Aug 8, 2015

    Billy Donovan dreamed of playing big-time college basketball. But this was no ordinary dream. This was more like a life mission. And Donovan’s goal, even as a teenager, was explicit. He wanted to play in the Big East. Back then, everything about the newly-formed conference fascinated him. The coaches. The star players. The level of competition. The proximity of each program to his home. There was just one problem. Not even St. John’s, located 25 minutes from his hometown and whose former coach, Brian Mahoney, was Donovan’s neighbor recruited him. Donovan needed a plan B. His father pushed for him to consider any of the New England Division II schools that offered full rides.

  • Looking back on Billy Donovan's brief NBA career

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sat, Aug 8, 2015

    On June 22, 1987, Billy Donovan was selected by Utah in the third round of the NBA Draft. But an unfavorable numbers game in Utah led Donovan to doubt he had a chance to see opening night. The Jazz already had 12 guaranteed contracts, and Donovan knew that in order to make the team someone else would need to be moved. At least one person thought that could happen. It was Jeff Van Gundy, a graduate assistant during Donovan’s senior year at Providence. Van Gundy started chirping, gassing Donovan up about his chances as he helped prepare him for training camp. “Jeff’s like, ‘Listen, man. I’m telling you. You’ve got a chance to make this team,’” Donovan remembered.

  • Why Nancy Lieberman called Muhammad Ali after her historic move to NBA assistant coach

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Fri, Jul 31, 2015

    Basketball Hall of Famer Nancy Lieberman was hired as an assistant coach of the Sacramento Kings on Friday, joining Becky Hammon of the San Antonio Spurs as another female NBA assistant coach. The 57-year-old Lieberman joins George Karl's staff in the state capital just shy of a year after Hammon was hired by the Spurs, making her the first full-time paid female NBA assistant coach.

  • OKC Thunder signs 'domestic draft-and-stash' pick Josh Huestis

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Updated: Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    Josh Huestis’ journey to the NBA is finally over. The Thunder signed the 2014 first-round draft pick on Thursday, fulfilling its end of a unique commitment the two sides made to each other before last year’s draft. Huestis, the 29th overall pick out of Stanford, raised eyebrows throughout the league when agreed to delay his NBA arrival and spend all of last season competing with the Thunder-owned Oklahoma City Blue of the NBA Development League. It was the first time that a first-round selection agreed to such an arrangement with a team. For Huestis, the deal allowed him to be selected higher than he was projected to be taken and secure a long-term commitment from a franchise.

  • NBA: Recapping another busy offseason

    By Darnell Mayberry and Anthony Slater | Published: Sat, Jul 18, 2015

    Another eventful NBA offseason has hit its annual quiet point. Here’s our recap of all the various ongoings of the past month:

  • Thunder guard Dion Waiters thinks OKC has everything it needs to win a title next season

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY Staff Writer dmayberry@oklahoman.com | Published: Wed, Jul 15, 2015

    Waiters appears to be doing his part by fulfilling his stated goal of getting into better shape this offseason and dedicating himself to coming back a better player. He said he’s lost about 10 pounds and is noticeably slimmer than he was during the season.

  • For the Thunder, matching Portland's contract offer to Enes Kanter leads to more questions than answers

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Updated: Mon, Jul 13, 2015

    It was largely a predictable outcome, one that had been expected for months, thus making the decision by Oklahoma City the easy part. Now come the challenges.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder: The pros and cons of the Thunder keeping Enes Kanter

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Fri, Jul 10, 2015

    Here are the pros and cons to the Thunder matching the Blazers’ offer.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Semaj Christon uses second chance to lift the Thunder to a sudden death double overtime victory

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Updated: Fri, Jul 10, 2015

    Semaj Christon had the ball and the fate of the Thunder’s summer league finale resting in his hands as the final seconds ticked off the game clock. But as he made his move, he slipped, lost the ball and watched from his backside as the ball went the other way. Los Angeles Clippers guard Geron Johnson pulled up from just past the halfcourt line and nailed what appeared to be a game-winning 3-pointer. But it was too late. The clock hit zero before the ball left his hands. It gave Christon a second chance. And in a rare sudden death double overtime, Christon delivered, drawing contact on a driving shot attempt and making the game-winning free throw to lift the Thunder to a 101-100 victory Friday at the Orlando Pro

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Thunder falls 87-81 to Memphis, will play for fifth place at the Orlando Pro Summer League

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Thu, Jul 9, 2015

    After an 87-81 loss to Memphis on Thursday at the Orlando Pro Summer League, the Thunder will play its final game against the Los Angeles Clippers at 7 a.m. central on Friday. Semaj Christon scored a game-high 19 points with five assists to lead the Thunder against the Grizzlies. Mitch McGary had 16 points and seven rebounds. But the Thunder had difficulty stopping the Grizzlies all game. Jarnell Stokes scored a team-high 18 points to lead Memphis. Russ Smith and Jordan Adams scored 17 points apiece. The Thunder trailed by as many as 14 points and was down by 10 with a minute and a half remaining but got within four in the final seconds. “We had our chances to come back in the game,” said Thunder summer league

  • Thunder rookie Cameron Payne learning the hard way at Summer League

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Thu, Jul 9, 2015

    ORLANDO — Cameron Payne sports two rubber bracelets on his left wrist. One is white with black letters. The other is blue with yellow letters. The blue band has become a bit of a metaphor for the start of the Thunder point guard’s professional career. “Trust the process,” the bracelet reads. Payne, the 14th overall pick in this year’s draft, must abide by that philosophy now more than ever. Payne is unable to compete at the Orlando Pro Summer League this week due to a fractured finger on his right hand. But that hasn’t stopped him from watching with a close eye. As his teammates have tried to sharpen their skills on the court, Payne has used this time to try to sharpen his mind.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Mitch McGary taking on a leadership role in Orlando

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Wed, Jul 8, 2015

    He was barking instructions to his fellow big men on the Thunder’s summer league roster, informing them of what drills to do and how to do them. In other words, McGary was taking charge.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder: A year later, Thunder draft prospect Josh Huestis has no regrets about becoming the NBA's first ever domestic draft and stash

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Wed, Jul 8, 2015

    He was the 29th overall pick by the Thunder last year. The first ever first-round selection to forego signing his NBA rookie contract to spend his entire first season in the NBA Development League.

  • OKC Thunder: Mitch McGary using Summer League to show improved shot

    Darnell Mayberry | Published: Tue, Jul 7, 2015

      Mitch McGary continues to impress at the Orlando Pro Summer League. As the days go on, the second-year Thunder forward is showing that he’s not just slimmer and more agile. He’s also flashing some high-level passing skills and an improved mid-range jump shot. McGary finished with just seven points and five rebounds as the Thunder fell 80-63 against the Los Angeles Clippers on Tuesday. But he again wowed those watching with his ability to find the open man on time and on target and knock down open shots from outside. “He’s a more confident shooter than he was last year,” said

  • OKC Thunder: Billy Donovan wants to make things easier for stars Kevin Durant, Russell Westbrook

    By Darnell Mayberry | Published: Tue, Jul 7, 2015

    ORLANDO — At his introductory press conference, Thunder coach Billy Donovan briefly described the style of play he seeks to bring to Oklahoma City. Its basic principles, he said, centered on player movement, ball movement and making the extra pass. In other words, Donovan wants to bring more structure to what historically has been an isolation-heavy offense. But achieving that goal and, more importantly, sustaining it could be a trying task without restricting Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant, two of the best and most creative one-on-one offensive players in the game. Donovan, however, has no intention to stifle his

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Billy Donovan talks Kevin Durant, new assistant coaches

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Mon, Jul 6, 2015

    Donovan’s relationship with Durant, perhaps his most important in his first season, appears to be off to a great start. Durant said Saturday that the time they’ve spent together in recent weeks has brought them closer, and Donovan echoed those same sentiments Monday.

Darnell Mayberry Today at 2:38 PM @basketballtalk We don't know s***, we treated KB like s***, we ain't s***, we ain't never gon be s***. That about cover it? lol
Darnell Mayberry Today at 2:22 PM @adamjoseph_27 Dec. and Jan. splits from his 2nd season (https://t.co/bmg0DDCNAP) and Nov. splits from last season (https://t.co/bmg0DDCNAP)
Darnell Mayberry Today at 1:23 PM Quite frankly, the Dion Waiters over Jeremy Lamb decision doesn't look all that hot either https://t.co/jfIsS4irF5
Darnell Mayberry Today at 1:21 PM The Kyle Singler over Jeremy Lamb choice by the Thunder is looking like a bigger disaster by the day - https://t.co/9TxIihvCko
Darnell Mayberry Today at 1:28 AM RT @WojYahooNBA Column: For Kobe Bryant, the end. https://t.co/IlEEzH8lNm
Darnell Mayberry Today at 1:23 AM Wait, what?? https://t.co/rfwjc4NOEw
Darnell Mayberry Sun, Nov. 29 2015 06:56:58 PM CST RT @JimMWeber: Michigan fans upon realizing Michigan St. AND Ohio St. could be in the College Football Playoff: https://t.co/sBAyTJiJmf
Darnell Mayberry Sun, Nov. 29 2015 06:44:09 PM CST As we suspected when the schedule was announced: Thunder fans could get a cool treat seeing Kobe in his second-to-last game April 11.
Darnell Mayberry Sun, Nov. 29 2015 12:02:59 AM CST Great company https://t.co/wNf24E19U7
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 11:58:32 PM CST @Kieran_Steckley I disagree there. But why is it OK for coaches to criticize players but players to not criticize coaches when warranted?
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 11:46:34 PM CST .@sarahcphipps Took one for the team tonight. Get well soon! https://t.co/KfguVsT9RF
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:50:15 PM CST @KOCOCarson @samikard too soon!
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:47:51 PM CST @samikard @KOCOCarson was wondering why he dissed her. Now I know.
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:38:16 PM CST @JonesOnTheNBA lol you ain't right man.
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 10:46:52 AM CST RT @reporterdavidj: In case you missed it, here's the ESPN feature on #ChadTough: https://t.co/A3HWIGYQmz @freep @freepsports @Mark__Snyder
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:30:21 AM CST @slaymerica check my timeline. point is he might never reach his potential. that's my concern for him. it's not a comparison of injuries.
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:23:31 AM CST RT @TheOneWhoKnocks: @DarnellMayberry Rose no more than 4 games first 3 seasons. You're durable until you're not
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:23:24 AM CST @Soonermagic16 nope. not at all. One bad season out of eight. not three bumpy ones in three. big difference.
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:21:58 AM CST @slaymerica Perhaps we can discuss rather than resort to blanket statements.
Darnell Mayberry Sat, Nov. 28 2015 12:10:46 AM CST @tbone88s I don't remember KB having this type of history. But Steph Curry's ankles are a good example of a player overcoming. It can happen