NBA: 2009-10 Oklahoma City Thunder Wallpapers
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Creation of the Thunder
In the aftermath of the Hurricane Katrina disaster in New Orleans, Louisiana, and surrounding area, the New Orleans Hornets temporarily relocated to Oklahoma City, playing the majority of their home games at the Ford Center during the 2005–06 and 2006–07 seasons. In due time, the city showed it could support the uprooted Hornets and NBA commissioner David Stern commented that Oklahoma City could support a franchise of its own.
In 2006, the SuperSonics franchise was sold to a group of Oklahoma City investors led by Clay Bennett for $350 million, a move approved by NBA owners the following October. Terms of the sale required the new ownership group to use a "good faith, best effort" for the term of 12 months in securing a new arena lease or venue in the Greater Seattle Area. Bennett then spent much of 2007 attempting to gain public funding for a new arena, or a major renovation of the KeyArena. However, e-mails between Bennett and co-owner Aubrey McClendon revealed that Bennett and partners did not intend to keep the team in Seattle, WA. Quoted in the e-mail McClendon wrote, "We didn't buy the team to keep it in Seattle. We hoped to come here." After 12 months, he announced that the franchise would move to Oklahoma City as soon as the lease with KeyArena expired.
In June 2008, a lawsuit between the City of Seattle and Bennett went to Federal Court and nearly a month later the two sides reached an agreement to settle. The terms would award the city of Seattle $45 million to get out of the remaining lease at KeyArena, and could provide an additional $30 million payment to Seattle in 2013 if certain conditions are met. The owners agreed to leave the 'SuperSonics' name, logo, and colors in Seattle for a possible future NBA franchise; however the items would remain the property of the Oklahoma City team along with other "assets," including championship banners and trophies. On September 3, 2008, the team name, along with logo and color, was announced.