The Oklahoma City Thunder is working to secure a new naming rights partner for the arena it plays in, the team said Tuesday.
Chesapeake Energy Corporation told the Thunder organization it will be terminating its arena naming rights agreement with the team effective immediately. The original 12-year agreement was announced in 2011.
“As Chesapeake Energy Arena, our building has been home to so many exciting and historic moments and events. As we look to forge a new partnership for naming rights, we will identify a partner who will help build on that history and be the centerpiece of our growing, modern and vibrant downtown environment,” said Clayton I. Bennett, chairman of the Oklahoma City Thunder, in a news release.
The energy company said this decision was part of the company's restructuring.
“We have greatly appreciated our long-standing partnership with the Thunder, and while our commitment to restoring our balance sheet and increasing our competitiveness required us to terminate our naming rights agreement, as proud Oklahomans, we will continue to strongly support the team,” said Doug Lawler, CEO of Chesapeake Energy.
The Thunder is focused on identifying a new long-term naming rights partner. In the interim, the building will continue to be called the Chesapeake Energy Arena.