Darnell Mayberry
Sports OKC Thunder Senior Reporter

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.

  • 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.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder: Semaj Christon turning heads at the Orlando Pro Summer League, looking to take the next step in his career.

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

    The 55th overall draft pick out of Xavier in 2014 followed up a 14-point, 10 assist effort against Charlotte in Saturday’s opener with a 12-point, nine-assist performance in the Thunder’s 73-65 win over The Orlando Magic’s Blue team on Monday.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder: Mitch McGary has lost nearly 30 pounds on a mission to transform his body and come back playing the best basketball of his life

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sun, Jul 5, 2015

    McGary credits the weight loss to cooking classes, a healthier diet and rigorous workouts. By eating better and transforming his body, McGary believes he’ll put himself in a better position to stay healthy and play the best basketball of his life.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder notebook: Kevin Durant says, "I got to lose some weight"

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sun, Jul 5, 2015

    This summer appears to be Durant’s biggest physical jump. He looks to be bigger than ever before as he lounges around the Amway Center practice court taking in the action on the first two days of the Orlando Pro Summer League.

  • OKC Thunder notebook: Semaj Christon hits game-winner, lifts Thunder over Charlotte in Orlando Pro Summer League play

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sat, Jul 4, 2015

    Semaj Christon scored the game-winning basket on a driving layup with 20.4 seconds remaining to lift the Thunder to a 76-74 win over Charlotte on the opening day of the 2015 Orlando Pro Summer League on Saturday.

  • OKC Thunder: Kevin Durant shows up unexpectedly at the Orlando Summer League, says surgically-repaired foot is progressing on schedule

    BY DARNELL MAYBERRY | Published: Sat, Jul 4, 2015

    Here was Kevin Durant, high volume scorer, arguably the world’s best player, walking around just like anyone else on the first day of the Orlando Pro Summer, walking around just fine after three surgeries to correct his problematic right foot.

  • Oklahoma City Thunder summer league schedule

    Darnell Mayberry | Published: Fri, Jul 3, 2015

    Oklahoma City Thunder Summer League schedule   Saturday: Thunder vs. Charlotte, 2 p.m. Monday: Thunder vs. Orlando Blue, 2 p.m. Tuesday: Thunder vs. Los Angeles Clippers, 4 p.m. Thursday: Thunder vs. Memphis Grizzlies, 4 p.m. Friday: TBD.   *All times central.

Darnell Mayberry Today at 4:50 PM @MartyMacsWorld Ahem, Norfolk State stand up!! :)
Darnell Mayberry Fri, Jul. 31 2015 09:42:18 PM CST Nancy Lieberman on her move to NBA assistant coach: "If you’re qualified you can have an opportunity" -- http://t.co/IlOOZmsNuj
Darnell Mayberry Fri, Jul. 31 2015 12:41:36 PM CST @EyeAmTruth Is that your house?
Darnell Mayberry Thu, Jul. 30 2015 05:34:53 PM CST Sam Presti statement on the signing of Josh Huestis. http://t.co/5ZELMhtCQx
Darnell Mayberry Thu, Jul. 30 2015 05:12:56 PM CST My story on Josh Huestis from earlier this month - http://t.co/U05QunrauY
Darnell Mayberry Thu, Jul. 30 2015 05:07:29 PM CST RT @ShamsCharania: Josh Huestis, the No. 29 pick in 2014, has signed a four-year rookie scale deal with the Oklahoma City Thunder, league s…
Darnell Mayberry Wed, Jul. 29 2015 11:20:30 AM CST @JoshofIsh Just recorded a special edition. Look for it Monday.
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 28 2015 03:38:46 PM CST We know three Thunder preseason games: Fenerbahce Ulker in OKC on Oct. 9, Mavs in Tulsa on Oct. 13 and at Utah on Oct. 20.
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 28 2015 01:23:02 PM CST The Thunder will play a preseason game at Utah on Tuesday, Oct. 20 at 8 p.m. central.
Darnell Mayberry Fri, Jul. 24 2015 12:48:09 AM CST RT @indystar: Know your rights during police encounters: http://t.co/jDso9BChVL http://t.co/yUiUqcXHgK
Darnell Mayberry Fri, Jul. 17 2015 10:02:21 AM CST Kevin Durant is coming back next season, and I can't wait!! http://t.co/ElqZzJsaVl (h/t @Teddy_P15)
Darnell Mayberry Fri, Jul. 17 2015 10:02:01 AM CST RT @JenniCarlson_OK: Why a mom wanted her daughter to go to KD's camp -- and how we offered an assist: http://t.co/rossuC6NTg
Darnell Mayberry Thu, Jul. 16 2015 10:33:49 AM CST Dion Waiters thinks OKC has everything it needs to win a title next season http://t.co/2AzaJWf2Ld
Darnell Mayberry Wed, Jul. 15 2015 03:22:11 PM CST RT @SiriusXMNBA: "[Durant] is progressing well..he is running which is stage three of that process" @okcthunder GM Sam Presti #NBA
Darnell Mayberry Wed, Jul. 15 2015 11:36:55 AM CST RT @ErikHorneOK: I mean, this seems appropriate. https://t.co/82o0czdLOC
Darnell Mayberry Wed, Jul. 15 2015 10:28:13 AM CST The Thunder retain Enes Kanter, as the ghost of James Harden looms over the team http://t.co/aY06HQjVug via @YahooSports
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 14 2015 10:34:49 PM CST @JoshofIsh I'm looking forward to the pod because Slater agreed, Berry disagreed and I was in the middle.
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 14 2015 10:33:30 PM CST @Hubbs0412 can trade for a player for up to that amount without having to send out matching salaries.
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 14 2015 10:32:29 PM CST @clay_clay_ he's ready but might be a year away on this team.
Darnell Mayberry Tue, Jul. 14 2015 10:31:27 PM CST @JeradKW13 Depends on how they do it. I could see Presti trying to get creative with it, signing him midway through the year for example.