YMCA Thunder Basketball League named Jr. NBA’s Program of the Year


OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – The NBA has named the YMCA Thunder Basketball League the Jr. NBA’s Program of the Year for its commitment to the community and work being done with young athletes.

The YMCA Thunder Basketball League is a youth league partnership between the Oklahoma City Thunder and statewide YMCA branches.

In its second year of operation, the YMCA Thunder Basketball League serves over 11,000 participants from 125 communities and is played in 24 different cities/YMCA locations. The league seeks to leverage the excitement and passion around recreational and competitive programming to create a healthy outlet for children to gain new skills, develop a sense of team and connect with positive role models. The league’s curriculum is centered around the pillars of teamwork, respect, determination and community.

“It’s an honor for the YMCA Thunder Basketball League to be selected for this award, and a reflection of the commitment we’ve made to positively impact the young athletes, volunteer coaches and communities that support these programs,” said Michelle Matthews, manager of Fan Development for the Thunder. “This impact is not possible without the countless hours put in by YMCA employees from across the state; their passion to change the lives of young athletes on and off the court extends far beyond this recognition.”

“We are honored that the YMCA Thunder Basketball League has been selected as the 2020 Jr. NBA Program of the Year,” states Chris Berry, District Executive Director and Sports Director with the YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City. “Beyond the game, the league’s impact expands through hours of service from volunteer coaches who provide positive mentorship, Character Development Clinics, virtual clinics during the COVID-19 pandemic, unique opportunities through YMCA Night with the Oklahoma City Thunder and so much more. We are excited to share this honor with all of the participants, coaches, supporters and staff.”

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