Berry Tramel
Sports Columnist and Reporter

Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist.

Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman, the Oklahoma City Times, the Norman Transcript and the Oklahoma Journal — and entered the newspaper business at the age of 17, with the Transcript in 1978. His first game assignment was the Lexington-Elmore City high school football game, and he has enjoyed the journey ever since, from high school wrestling duals and regional track meets to Orange Bowls and the NBA playoffs.

Tramel was born and raised in Norman, Okla. He and his wife, Tricia, were married in 1980 and live in Norman near their daughter, son-in-law and three granddaughters.


  • Thunder Buddies podcast: Recapping OKC's Game 3 blowout of the Dallas Mavericks

    Anthony Slater,Erik Horne,Berry Tramel | Updated: Fri, Apr 22, 2016

    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 podcast listening experience, click here and subscribe. Hope you enjoy: Thunder Buddies -- Mavs-Thunder Game 3 recap (<–Click Here) - Much like Game 1, the Thunder blasted the Mavericks in Game 3. What led to the blowout? What's the Thunder's biggest advantage in this series? Can OKC's bench continue this type of play? Is there any way the Mavericks get back in the series? We discuss.

  • Waiters, Kanter upstage Thunder's starting lineup

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Fri, Apr 22, 2016

    The Thunder routed Dallas 131-102 in Game 3 Thursday night, and the news keeps getting worse for the Mavericks. The Thunder won in a rout, and its worst lineup in Game 3 was the five starters. Steven Adams, Kevin Durant, Serge Ibaka, Andre Roberson and Russell Westbrook played well to open each half but had a rough patch in the second quarter. They played 16.6 minutes together and were outscored by four points. In the other 31.4 minutes, OKC outscored the Mavs by 33. The Thunder has the NBA’s best starting lineup, and it usually excels, then the bench gives back some of the surplus. Not in Game 3. All kinds of lineups worked great. Dion Waiters replacing Andre Roberson with the starters played 2.4

  • Thunder's vast talent edge sinks Mavs

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Published: Thu, Apr 21, 2016

    DALLAS — Dallas' 7-foot superstar went up for a breakaway dunk, and Oklahoma City's 6-foot-4 superstar followed and jumped like he had launched from a trampoline. Russell Westbrook knocked the ball out of Dirk Nowitzki's hands, and that's really all you need to know about Thunder-Mavericks. Not just Game 3. Thunder-Mavericks in general. Right then and there, everyone on both sides of the Red River had figured out the truth. This series was back to being lopsided and destined to stay that way. “Heck of a play,” said the stately Nowitzki, who knows the athletic mismatch his Mavs face. “He came out of nowhere.

  • Late-game problems nothing new for Thunder

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Thu, Apr 21, 2016

    The Thunder’s late-game troubles are well-distributed. Since the all-star break, the Thunder is 3-12 in games that reached the final five minutes with a five-point deficit or less. And that trend didn’t change in Game 2 against the Mavericks on Monday, when a seven-point Thunder lead disappeared quickly and Dallas won 85-84. Of course, that’s the bad news. The good news is that before the all-star break, the Thunder was 19-10 in close games (five points inside five minutes). So whatever plagues the Thunder is not irreversible. It’s also not necessarily new. The truth is, the last five years, the Thunder has not been great in close games. Back in 2010-11, when the Thunder was young and

  • Jeremy Lamb falls out of Charlotte rotation

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Thu, Apr 21, 2016

    Jeremy Lamb thought he was getting a new lease on his NBA career when the Thunder traded him to the Charlotte Hornets. And for awhile, that was true. In the first 37 games of the season, Lamb averaged 10.4 points and 20.9 minutes per game. He was part of a solid Charlotte season. But the deeper into the season, the less Lamb has played. And now he’s fallen completely out of the Hornet rotation.

  • Dallas travelblog: Collaboration on I-35

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Thu, Apr 21, 2016

    Well, another NBA playoff series in Dallas. The Thunder’s third in six seasons. Frankly, I was hoping for Memphis. Nothing against Dallas the city. Not any kind of preference for the Grizzlies over the Mavericks as a first-round foe. Just a change of scenery. We’re in Dallas all the time. OU football. OSU football. Big 12 football. Conferences. Conference issues. Memphis is a cool city that we don’t frequent much. But Dallas it is. So Wednesday, A.C. Slater, Erik Horne and I headed down in a rented Volkswagen. And A.C. asked me a good question. What’s a good-sized Texas city I’ve never seen? I rerouted the question. What’s the biggest Texas city I’ve never been

  • DANCING WITH THE STARS: Thunder-Mavs goes from series to serious

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Updated: Wed, Apr 20, 2016

    America has been blessed with some great dancing duos. Ginger Rogers and Fred Astaire. John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John. Patrick Swayze and Jennifer Grey. Russell Westbrook and Cameron Payne. But one man's waltz is another man's dirty dancing. Charlie Villanueva, perhaps citing Ecclesiastes' third chapter, declared there's a time to dance and a time for war, and he considers the Western Conference playoffs the latter. Villanueva stepped between Westbrook and Payne during their pregame ritual Monday night. Stepped between America's newest dancing sensations and into the Thunder's hall of villains, where Patrick Beverley, Metta World Chaos, Matt Barnes and Zach Randolph reside. But nobody puts Westbrook in the

  • Billy Donovan: Kevin Durant has to adjust to physical play

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Published: Wed, Apr 20, 2016

    After practice Wednesday, Thunder coach Billy Donovan talked strategy and mentality for Game 3 in Dallas: Why are we seeing such low scores in the playoffs? Donovan: “One is the familiarity with each other, team-wise. And the other thing, too, is the amount of contact in the playoffs. You've got to be able to adjust. If you look at it, Kevin Durant has been a player that has gotten to the free-throw line at a pretty high clip during his career. He got fouled on a 3-point shot and he took two technical fouls. That was four of his five free-throw attempts. Outside of a long 3(-pointer) coming off a screen, he didn't generate one free throw, and I would say Kevin pretty much played downhill and was in the paint.

  • Power Lunch: Chat with columnist Berry Tramel

    From Staff Reports | Updated: Wed, Apr 20, 2016

    Join Berry Tramel to talk Thunder, OU and OSU in today's live chat at 11 a.m.

  • First team to 90: defense rules in NBA Playoffs

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Wed, Apr 20, 2016

      The Boston Celtics scored seven points in the first quarter Tuesday night in Atlanta. They had 28 at halftime, 46 after three quarters and finished with 72. In these still-young NBA playoffs, the Celts’ anemic scoring doesn’t even rank as the worst performance. The Dallas Mavericks had 29 points in Game 1 in Oklahoma City on Saturday night and finished with 70.

  • Thunder Buddies podcast: How concerning was the Thunder's Game 2 loss to Dallas?

    Anthony Slater,Berry Tramel,Erik Horne | Updated: Tue, Apr 19, 2016

    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 podcast listening experience, click here and subscribe. Hope you enjoy: Thunder Buddies -- Game 2 Mavs-Thunder recap (<–Click Here) - The Thunder, shockingly, lost to the depleted Dallas Mavericks in Game 2 at home. But unsurprisingly, it happened because of some poor late-game play. What went wrong? What happened to Kevin Durant? What needs to be done to fix it? We discuss.

  • Old warhorse Raymond Felton lifts Mavericks

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Tue, Apr 19, 2016

    Back on Nov. 14, Raymond Felton scored 23 points as the Dallas Mavericks won at Houston. On Jan. 6, Felton scored 22 points as Dallas won at New Orleans. And until last week, those were Felton’s only 20-point games since March 6, 2013, when Felton was a Knickerbocker. Felton once was a budding star. The point guard on Roy Williams’ great 2005 NCAA title team at North Carolina, Felton was drafted by Charlotte and averaged 13.3 points and 6.4 assists per game in five seasons with the Bobcats. But injuries and legal problems and old age have marked Felton’s career since then. Now he’s just a 31-year-old journeyman, one of the Mavs’ many war horses. Dallas has so many in the Deron

  • Durant's frustrating night gives life to Mavericks

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Updated: Mon, Apr 18, 2016

    On the bench, the Thunder kept encouraging Kevin Durant. Keep your head up. Keep attacking. Keep shooting. On the court, Russell Westbrook kept feeding Durant. Pass after pass. Sometimes desperately. Anything to get Durant the ball. You can't score without the ball. But on this night, Durant was hard-pressed to score with the ball. The Zombie Mavericks stunned the Thunder 85-84 Monday night, courtesy of the worst playoff performance in Durant's career. Durant had more turnovers (seven) than field goals (six). He took 33 shots. Durant's career high is 34; he's launched that many just twice. Durant had 27 misses. The most of his career, regular season or not.

  • Thunder Report Card: Grading OKC's 85-84 loss to Dallas in Game 2

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Updated: Mon, Apr 18, 2016

    The Thunder won Game 1 by 38 points on Saturday night. But the Dallas Mavericks turned that around, upsetting the Thunder 85-84 Monday night, and the grades reflect a discouraging performance from OKC:

  • Game 1 blowout usually is a series predictor

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Mon, Apr 18, 2016

    In the 2011 NBA playoffs, only one game was decided by at least 30 points. In the 2012 playoffs, only three games were decided by at least 30 points. In the 2013 NBA playoffs, only three games decided by at least 30 points. 2014, two games decided by at least 30 points. But in 2015, five playoff games were decided by at least 30 points. And over the weekend, when the 2016 playoffs started with eight games, four were decided by at least 30 points: Thunder 108-70 over the Mavericks, Warriors 104-78 over the Rockets, Heat 123-91 over the Hornets and Spurs 106-74 over the Grizzlies. Is that a sign of a slippage in parity? Certainly the Western Conference does not have the quality depth it has seen in recent years.

  • Which Thunder lineups worked best against Dallas?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Mon, Apr 18, 2016

    When you lead by 44 and end up winning 108-70, the answers are simple. What went well for the Thunder in Game 1 against the Mavericks? Almost everything. What went wrong? Almost nothing. The Thunder was an overwhelming favorite against Dallas, and nothing changed in Game 1. But one blowout doesn’t mean automatic doom for the Mavs. A second straight blowout probably does. Let’s look back at Game 1 and see what we can learn: * OKC’s starting lineup played 12.9 minutes together. And outscored the Mavericks by 19 points. That’s a massive number. The Thunder’s other lineups weren’t significantly important — no other lineup played at least five minutes.

  • Enes Kanter is a nice guy with a flair for medieval warfare

    By Berry Tramel | Updated: Sun, Apr 17, 2016

    In a bygone era, Kanter would be known as a gentleman. Dare we say it? Enes Kanter has a sweet spirit. All of which will be startling news to the Dallas Mavericks.

  • Thunder Buddies podcast: Recapping the Thunder's Game 1 blowout of Dallas

    Anthony Slater,Berry Tramel,Erik Horne | Updated: Sun, Apr 17, 2016

    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 podcast listening experience, click here and subscribe. Hope you enjoy: Thunder Buddies -- Thunder-Mavs Game 1 recap (<–Click Here) - Game 1 was a romp: 108-70 Thunder. What was so effective for OKC? How big an impact did Enes Kanter have? Will this Serge Ibaka remain? Can the Mavericks do anything to make this series competitive? We discuss.

  • Thunder looked elite in Game 1 because of defense

    By Berry Tramel Columnist btramel@oklahoman.com | Published: Sun, Apr 17, 2016

    The Dallas Mavericks frantically whipped the ball around the perimeter from player to player, not so much looking for a shot but looking for a chance to breathe. Andre Roberson's arms were everywhere, threatening a steal any time the ball was on his side of the court. Russell Westbrook ran at the Mavs like they had stolen his little brother's lunch money. Even Kevin Durant got in on the fun. The Chesapeake Arena crowd got more excited with every desperate Dallas pass, realizing they were seeing sell-out defense. The Dallas possession ended with Wesley Matthews throwing up a 25-footer to avoid the shot clock. Twenty and a half minutes into the game, it was the Mavs' 31st miss. With only seven makes.

  • Western Conference playoffs: Can any underdog put up a fight?

    Berry Tramel | Updated: Fri, Apr 15, 2016

    The NBA’s Western Conference playoffs launch with a whimper Saturday. Four series. Four projected lopsided series. The fifth-seeded Portland TrailBlazers are 44-38. The injury-riddled Thunder missed the 2015 playoffs with a 45-37 record. So lots of disparity in the –usually-loaded West. Let’s get to the predictions: OKLAHOMA CITY vs. DALLAS These Mavericks clearly are the worst of the Thunder’s playoff foes, going back six years to OKC’s maiden post-season series. This Dallas team is 42-40. The next-worse record of a Thunder playoff foe was the 2012 Mavericks, who went 36-30, which translates to a 45-37 record over an 82-game schedule. Houston in 2013 also went 45-37.




Berry Tramel Thu, May. 05 2016 08:12:15 PM CST Now you know why Andre Roberson starts for the Thunder https://t.co/tt1sHJgKlU
Berry Tramel Thu, May. 05 2016 09:54:03 AM CST Good news for Thunder: Spurs have some road issues https://t.co/6iEjlSVJwt
Berry Tramel Wed, May. 04 2016 07:51:03 PM CST Thunder journal: LaMarcus Aldridge in historic company through two games https://t.co/hrnq2NauFE
Berry Tramel Wed, May. 04 2016 05:27:51 PM CST Josh Richardson has become Heat's rookie of the year https://t.co/gMcs6x4GMg
Berry Tramel Wed, May. 04 2016 03:03:50 PM CST San Antonio travelblog: 90 mph on the Pickle Parkway https://t.co/GJiromWz7s
Berry Tramel Wed, May. 04 2016 10:40:32 AM CST LaMarcus Aldridge having historic series against Thunder https://t.co/kJHVUG6V0O
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 08:09:42 PM CST OKC Thunder: Billy Donovan needs to bag a timeout https://t.co/vG9V1Q33rL
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 04:40:19 PM CST Spurs fan: Popovich coached a bad game https://t.co/sCeYmSmrLN
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 02:29:26 PM CST Why the furor? Spurs got what they needed https://t.co/diXYpvlAjB
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 02:29:25 PM CST San Antonio travelblog: A tight deadline and shooting NBA treys https://t.co/JvnNQJh2rh
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 11:31:54 AM CST Thunder evens series with more physical approach https://t.co/deDYz2C4vk
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 10:27:10 AM CST Power Lunch: Chat with columnist Berry Tramel https://t.co/7z93V64BmE
Berry Tramel Tue, May. 03 2016 02:54:13 AM CST OKC Thunder: Grading the Thunder's 98-97 win over the Spurs https://t.co/r34pfnzSWu
Berry Tramel Mon, May. 02 2016 02:44:40 PM CST Eastern Conference semifinals: Go with Toronto & Cleveland https://t.co/6WkRtsqvDF
Berry Tramel Mon, May. 02 2016 02:44:40 PM CST San Antonio travelblog: Trying to interview Gregg Popovich https://t.co/noihFu6gH8
Berry Tramel Sun, May. 01 2016 08:39:18 PM CST Time for the Thunder to fear Kawhi Leonard https://t.co/5FpljjpeBZ
Berry Tramel Sun, May. 01 2016 07:34:13 PM CST MANU GINÓBILI Q&A: Head sometimes hard to control https://t.co/DIs7HGri0M
Berry Tramel Sun, May. 01 2016 02:53:26 PM CST San Antonio travelblog: Good eats at the Josephine Street Bar & Grill https://t.co/GJOR8duWnE
Berry Tramel Sun, May. 01 2016 01:03:43 AM CST Thunder must play much better, else summer of Durant will get here quickly https://t.co/fHM3dTpb3d
Berry Tramel Sat, Apr. 30 2016 11:57:59 PM CST OKC Thunder: Grading the Thunder's 124-92 loss to the Spurs https://t.co/3y43mTeEhV

Advertisement