StitchCrew Change Makers Podcast
#9 Brian Byrnes, OKC Thunder - From inauspicious beginnings to becoming one of the NBA’s most successful franchises.
Jun 19, 2019 · 1 hr 17 min
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Sports teams are one of the greatest motivators of our time. They inspire commitment, dedication and risk-taking. they also teach us a thing or two about an individual’s ability to push limits, manage success and failure as a learning step to becoming great. Moreover, sports teams tend to be inclusive, diverse and unscripted. These cultural characteristics are critical traits of successful entrepreneurs and thriving innovation ecosystems. 

But what about the similarities of startups and the actual management of the franchise? In 2018, the Oklahoma City Thunder celebrated ten years since relocating from Seattle and changing its name from the Seattle SuperSonics. Since the move, the team has seen a drastic evolution, but the transition and beginning of a new brand in a new market, hasn’t always been a smooth ride. Similar to the argument some still make that a startup can’t be prosperous outside larger markets with abundant access to capital, there were several people who questioned the viability that a professional sports franchise would survive in a smaller market.

Join us as Brian Byrnes, Senior Executive with the Oklahoma City Thunder recaps the last ten years of the team, the transition from Seattle to Oklahoma City, the loss of high profile players and recruitment of new ones and their ultimate strategy for success: community. 


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