OKLAHOMA CITY — In part two of The Franchise’ How Are the Fans Taking It series, we meet with Seattle Seahawk wide receiver, former Kansas State Wildcat and Booker T. Washington alum Tyler Lockett.
In addition to Lockett doing his home state proud in the NFL, the Pro Bowler is a fan of the Oklahoma City Thunder.
In this tumultuous time for the OKC fanbase, it is important to have perspective. Most recently, the Thunder fought hard against the reigning-MVP in Giannis Antetokounmpo before losing in the final seconds. Such has been the theme for this scrappy 4-6 squad.
The Tulsa native Lockett was kind enough to take time to answer questions about his Thunder fandom not 24 hours following a six catch, 100 yard performance against the Atlanta Falcons on October 27th.
This is part two of the series. For the Franchise’s interview with Good Charlotte guitarist/keyboardist and Thunder fan Billy Martin, click here.
The Franchise: How did you find out about the Paul George trade and what went through your mind soon after?
Tyler Lockett: I was in Austin. I was at the club because I was on a couple’s trip. I found out literally there in the club. looked on TV and it said Oklahoma City traded Paul George. I was really upset. I didn’t want to party anymore. I was kind of down in the dumps and I was asking why. Why? Why? Why? I understood at the end of the day.
TF: As a professional athlete is it still difficult to balance being a fan like normal people but also understanding the business aspect better than those normal fans?
TL: I think there’s a good balance. I think we’re still fans and at the end of the day, I think fans will be fans. Being able to understand the game of it and the aspect of it, we understand the bigger picture of things and why things have to go the way that they go.
TF: Russell Westbrook gets traded — is it still hard to fathom him not wearing a Thunder jersey?
TL: No, I was kind of happy he got traded because I knew how much he gave the organization and I knew he wanted to be able to have the chance to win. Just to be able to be a Russell Westbrook fan, being able to support him, I was happy to see how they work together as an organization and as a player and kind of put him to a place that he wanted to be to have a chance to be able to win a championship. I thought it was pretty cool that they were able to work together with that.
TF: How have you adjusted your expectations?
TL: I haven’t changed it. I still enjoy watching them. Loved watching Chris Paul when he was there and when he was on the Hornets and they came to Oklahoma City. Looking forward to when [Andre] Roberson comes back. I love the way they Shai Gilgeous-Alexander’s playing.[Danilo] Gallinari, [Terrance] Ferguson. Trying to see when we get Steven Adams back because he got kind of a knee contusion. I’m a big Thunder fan. Love watching them play whenever they get a chance to play.
TF: Thoughts on Billy Donovan as a coach?
TL: I like Billy Donovan. I like everything that he’s about. I know a lot of people feel whatever type of way they feel about him. I really think that he’s a great coach. He’s learning his players and learning everything about them, what they do best, and trying to figure out what offensive scheme is going to be able to allow them to be successful.
TF: Favorite memory as a Thunder fan?
TL: I don’t really have much. One of my favorite memories is just the imagination part of it when we had Paul George, Melo, and Russell Westbrook.
TF: The player you’re excited to watch this season and in the future?
TL: Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, for sure.
Special thanks once again to the Seattle Seahawks and Tyler Lockett for taking the time to answer questions.
Brady Trantham has covered the Oklahoma City Thunder for The Franchise since April 2018 and for Thunder Digest since 2016. He hosts a Thunder podcast with Madysson Morris “OKC-82 Podcast” which can be found on all podcast outlets, and is a featured co-host on the Franchise Thunder Insider’s Show on Saturdays from 10-12. For Sooner fans, you can also listen to the “Inside OU” podcast with John Hoover, Rufus Alexander and Brady. Brady is a graduate of the University of Oklahoma class of 2014. Follow him on Twitter @BradyDoesSports