Fans pumped for Thunder's home game

Tuesday, October 14th 2008, 6:12 pm
By: News 9


OKLAHOMA CITY -- The Oklahoma City Thunder will face Los Angeles Clippers Tuesday night in their first pre-season home game at the Ford Center.

"It's great. This is the first home game of our new home team, so it's really exciting to have them here and kind of see something that's been a dream for people in Oklahoma City to finally come true," said Tim Linville of the Ford Center.

As the preparations at the Ford Center continued Tuesday, many fans stopped by to try to buy tickets.

"To have an NBA team here is exciting and to have something fun we can look forward to," fan Lesli Massad.

In Bricktown, Zio's geared up for an expected 15 percent spike in business, which is what the restaurant experienced during the Hornets game days.

"We've scheduled extra at least 15 to 20 people, that includes eight servers just so we can take care of people quickly and efficiently," Zio's General manager Tim Hallcroft said. "They can get in and out and get to the game quickly."

Many Oklahoma City residents watched the preparations with a sense of anticipation and pride.

"Just seeing those jerseys that say, ‘Oklahoma City' just gives you a big lump in the back of your throat that this really occurred," Mayor Mick Cornett said.

Cornett went to Monday's pre-season game in Tulsa and said he won't miss Tuesday night's either.

"It's a great stress relief to leave City Hall, especially on a morning like this and sit down and watch a basketball game," Cornett said. "I'll be their biggest fan."

The team will play on the floor from the BIG 12 Conference tournament. The team won't play on its official Thunder floor until the first regular season game in two weeks.

A limited amount of tickets were still available for the Tuesday night game. They can be purchased at the Ford Center Box Office.