Oklahoma City Thunder (NBA)

International Players, 2023-24 Season

Bismack BiyomboCenterDR Congo2023-24Lubumbashi, Democratic Republic of the Congo
Lugentz DortGuardCanada2023-24Montreal, Canada
Ousmane DiengForwardSenegal2023-24Dakar, Senegal
Josh GiddeyGuardAustralia2023-24Melbourne, Australia
Shai Gilgeous-AlexanderGuardCanada2023-24Toronto, Canada
Olivier SarrCenterFrance2023-24Toulouse, France

Oklahoma City Team History

The Oklahoma City Thunder, formerly the Seattle SuperSonics, have undergone a remarkable transformation since their relocation in 2008. Beyond their success on the court, the Thunder have cultivated a distinct tradition of embracing international talent. This tradition traces back to their early days in Seattle but truly flourished in Oklahoma City. One of the pivotal figures in this evolution was Serge Ibaka, a Congolese-born power forward who became a defensive anchor for the Thunder during their formidable years alongside Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook. Ibaka’s shot-blocking prowess and defensive tenacity solidified his status as a cornerstone of the team, exemplifying the Thunder’s commitment to global talent.

Following Ibaka’s tenure, the Thunder continued their international recruitment efforts, further diversifying their roster. Notable among these acquisitions was Steven Adams, hailing from New Zealand. Adams quickly established himself as one of the league’s premier centers, known for his rugged style of play and relentless rebounding. His presence in the paint provided the Thunder with a formidable interior presence, contributing to their competitiveness in the Western Conference. Additionally, the Thunder expanded their international footprint with the addition of players like Alex Abrines from Spain, further enriching their roster with diverse skill sets and perspectives.

The Thunder’s commitment to international talent not only enhances their on-court performance but also reflects the organization’s global outlook. This approach has yielded tangible results, with international players playing pivotal roles in the team’s success over the years. As the Thunder continue to build for the future, their tradition of embracing talent from around the world remains a cornerstone of their identity, underscoring the team’s commitment to excellence and inclusivity on the global stage.