OKLAHOMA CITY - The Oklahoma City Thunder spent millions in the off-season to bolster their lineup. The OKC fan base has been revitalized and fans are now spending big bucks at downtown businesses.
The OKC Mayor’s office estimates that more than $1.4 million is spent in Oklahoma City around every Thunder home game. That means more than $57 million is open for the regular season alone.
Restaurants in Bricktown, all the way up to Automobile Alley, are seeing an increase in business, especially after a shorter than normal postseason run last year.
"You could [definitely] feel the effects but we are excited for this year. We think it will be a pretty good season," said Jeff Moody, General Manager at Broadway 10 Chophouse.
The 21c Museum Hotel "may or may not" host visiting team and media. They say they took in on the chin last spring, but traffic at the restaurant and at the check-in desk is now very brisk.
Melanie Briley of the 21c Museum Hotel says they love what the Thunder has done with their team this year.
“They’ve said they’re serious and they are moving forward and we love to be along for this journey," said Briley.
The big dollar difference happens when the NBA Playoffs roll around.
OKC hosted two games last year.
They could potentially host 16 this season if they make a run to the title.
That scenario would add an extra $22 million in taxable revenue.