"Even though it’s fictional, it takes the tone of a bison, the history of this community,” said Brian Byrnes, vice president of tickets and services. "The bison itself is going through a renaissance, having once been near extinction, now coming back in great numbers.
"We feel that’s a parallel story to what this city, this state is going through. We’re hoping our team is part of this renaissance, this growth, a ‘Yes We Can’ optimism. The story takes on that tone, that Rumble didn’t just drop in out of thin air Tuesday night.”
Thunder officials spent five months weighing dozens of options that ranged from picking a character and name to tediously developing a costume. In the end a bison — not a buffalo — was selected, similar to sky blue, featured on the state flag, being among the team colors.
"We’ve learned our fans are very passionate, very emotional,” Byrnes said. "They’re connected to this team. They value the NBA experience and have given us unbelievable support.”