Nicholas John Collison is an American former professional basketball player who played his entire 15-year career in the National Basketball Association with the Seattle SuperSonics/Oklahoma City Thunder franchise. He was drafted by the SuperSonics in the first round of the 2003 NBA draft and retired as a member of the Thunder in 2018; as a college player, Collison went to two Final Fours with the Kansas Jayhawks. Collison was born in Orange City and grew up in Fort Dodge and Iowa Falls, he attended Iowa Falls High School and was a McDonald's All-American in 1999. Teaming with fellow Iowan Kirk Hinrich to form one of the best duos in college basketball, Collison helped KU reach two consecutive Final Fours. Collison finished his college career as the leading scorer in the history of the Big 12 Conference. In 2003, his Jayhawks lost to Carmelo Anthony and the Syracuse Orange in the National Championship game, 81–78, he played for the United States national team at the 2002 FIBA World Championship.
Collison's #4 jersey was retired by the Kansas Jayhawks on November 25, 2003 during halftime of the Kansas-Michigan State game in recognition of his achievements over his four-year career. Collison was selected by the Seattle SuperSonics with the 12th overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft, but missed the 2003–04 season with injuries to both shoulders, he made his NBA debut on November 3, 2004, recording two points, five rebounds and two assists in a 114–84 loss to the Los Angeles Clippers. He appeared in all 82 games in his rookie season, averaging 5.6 points and 4.6 rebounds in 17.0 minutes per game. He played in all 82 games for a second time during the 2006–07 season. On January 9, 2007, he had a career-best game with 29 points and 21 rebounds in a 113–102 loss to the Phoenix Suns. In 2008, the franchise rebranded as the Thunder. In 2012, he helped the Thunder reach the NBA Finals, where they lost in five games to the Miami Heat. On February 3, 2015, Collison signed a two-year, $7.5 million contract extension with the Thunder.
On July 21, 2017, Collison re-signed with the Thunder to a minimum salary deal. On May 10, 2018, Collison announced his retirement from professional basketball. On January 12, 2019, the Thunder announced that they would be retiring Collison's No. 4 jersey, becoming the first number retired by the Thunder. After the Sonics relocated to Oklahoma City, Collison continued to make his home in Seattle. Collison has a daughter named Emma, his younger brother, played college basketball for their father's alma mater, Briar Cliff University in Sioux City, Iowa. List of NCAA Division I men's basketball players with 2000 points and 1000 rebounds List of NBA players who have spent their entire career with one franchise Career statistics and player information from Basketball-Reference.com Nick Collison at nba.com
Syracuse University is a private research university in Syracuse, New York, United States. The institution's roots can be traced to the Genesee Wesleyan Seminary, founded in 1831 by the Methodist Episcopal Church in Lima, New York. After several years of debate over relocating the college to Syracuse, the university was established in 1870, independent of the college. Since 1920, the university has identified itself as nonsectarian, although it maintains a relationship with The United Methodist Church; the campus is in the University Hill neighborhood of Syracuse and southeast of downtown, on one of the larger hills. Its large campus features an eclectic mix of buildings, ranging from nineteenth-century Romanesque Revival structures to contemporary buildings. SU is organized into 13 schools and colleges, with nationally recognized programs in information studies and library science, communications, business administration, inclusive education and wellness, sport management, public administration and the College of Arts and Sciences.
Syracuse University athletic teams, known as the Orange, participate in 20 intercollegiate sports. SU is a member of the Atlantic Coast Conference, or ACC for all NCAA Division I athletics, except for the men's rowing and women's ice hockey teams. SU is a member of the Eastern College Athletic Conference; the Genesee Wesleyan Seminary was founded in 1831 by the Genesee Annual Conference of the Methodist Episcopal Church in Lima, New York, south of Rochester. In 1850, it was resolved to enlarge the institution from a seminary into a college, or to connect a college with the seminary, becoming Genesee College. However, the location was soon thought by many to be insufficiently central, its difficulties were compounded by the next set of technological changes: the railroad that displaced the Erie Canal as the region's economic engine bypassed Lima completely. The trustees of the struggling college decided to seek a locale whose economic and transportation advantages could provide a better base of support.
The college began looking for a new home at the same time Syracuse, ninety miles to the east, was engaged in a search to bring a university to the city, having failed to convince Ezra Cornell and Andrew Dickson White to locate Cornell University there rather than in Ithaca. Syracuse resident White pressed that the new university should locate on the hill in Syracuse due to the city's attractive transportation hub, which would ease the recruitment of faculty and other persons of note. However, as a young carpenter working in Syracuse, Cornell had been twice robbed of his wages, thereafter considered Syracuse a Sodom and Gomorrah insisting the university be in Ithaca on his large farm on East Hill, overlooking the town and Cayuga Lake. Meanwhile, there were several years of dispute between the Methodist ministers and contending cities across the state, over proposals to move Genesee College to Syracuse. At the time, the ministers wanted a share of the funds from the Morrill Land Grant Act for Genesee College.
They agreed to a quid pro quo donation of $25,000 from Senator Cornell in exchange for their support for his bill. Cornell insisted the bargain be written into the bill and Cornell became New York State's Land Grant University in 1865. In 1869, Genesee College obtained New York State approval to move to Syracuse, but Lima got a court injunction to block the move, Genesee stayed in Lima until it was dissolved in 1875. By that time, the court injunction had been made moot by the founding of a new university on March 24, 1870. On that date the State of New York granted the new Syracuse University its own charter, independent of Genesee College; the City of Syracuse had offered $100,000 to establish the school. Bishop Jesse Truesdell Peck had donated $25,000 to the proposed school and was elected the first president of the Board of Trustees. Rev. Daniel Steele, a former Genesee College president, served as the first administrative leader of Syracuse until its chancellor was appointed; the university opened in September 1871 in rented space downtown.
George F. Comstock, a member of the new university's board of trustees, had offered the school 50 acres of farmland on a hillside to the southeast of the city center. Comstock intended the hill to develop as an integrated whole; the university was founded as coeducational. President Peck stated at the opening ceremonies, "The conditions of admission shall be equal to all persons... There shall be no invidious discrimination here against woman.... Brains and heart shall have a fair chance... " Syracuse implemented this policy with a high proportion of women students. In the College of Liberal Arts, the ratio between male and female students during the 19th century was even; the College of Fine Arts was predominantly female, a low ratio of women enrolled in the College of Medicine and the College of Law. Men and women were taught together in the same courses, many extra-curricular activities were coeducational as well. Syracuse developed "women-only" organizations and clubs. Coeducation at Syracuse traced its roots to the early days of Genesee College where educators and students like Frances Willard and Belva Lockwood were influenced by the Women's movement in nearby Seneca Falls, NY.
However, the progressive "co-ed" policies practiced at Genesee would soon find controversy at the new university in Syracuse. C
The Atlanta Hawks are an American professional basketball team based in Atlanta, Georgia. The Hawks compete in the National Basketball Association as a member of the league's Eastern Conference Southeast Division; the team plays its home games at State Farm Arena. The team's origins can be traced to the establishment of the Buffalo Bisons in 1946 in Buffalo, New York, a member of the National Basketball League owned by Ben Kerner and Leo Ferris. After 38 days in Buffalo, the team moved to Moline, where they were renamed the Tri-Cities Blackhawks. In 1949, they joined the NBA as part of the merger between the NBL and the Basketball Association of America, had Red Auerbach as coach. In 1951, Kerner moved the team to Milwaukee. Kerner and the team moved again in 1955 to St. Louis, where they won their only NBA Championship in 1958 and qualified to play in the NBA Finals in 1957, 1960 and 1961; the Hawks played the Boston Celtics in all four of their trips to the NBA Finals. The St. Louis Hawks moved to Atlanta in 1968, when Kerner sold the franchise to Thomas Cousins and former Georgia Governor Carl Sanders.
The Hawks own the second-longest drought of not winning an NBA championship at 60 seasons. The franchise's lone NBA championship, as well as all four NBA Finals appearances, occurred when the team was based in St. Louis. Meanwhile, they went 48 years without advancing past the second round of the playoffs in any format, until breaking through in 2015. However, the Hawks are one of only four NBA teams that have qualified to play in the NBA playoffs in 10 consecutive seasons in the 21st century, they achieved this feat between 2008 and 2017. The other teams that have made it to at least 10 consecutive playoff appearances in the 21st century are the San Antonio Spurs, Denver Nuggets, Dallas Mavericks; the origins of the Atlanta Hawks can be traced to the Buffalo Bisons franchise, founded in 1946. The Bisons were a member of the National Basketball League, played their games at the Buffalo Memorial Auditorium; the club was coached by Nat Hickey. Their first game – a 50–39 victory over the Syracuse Nationals – was played on November 8, 1946.
On the team was William "Pop" Gates, along with William "Dolly" King, was one of the first two African-American players in the NBL. The team, which needed to draw 3,600 fans per game to break struggled to draw 1,000 fans per game to the Auditorium; the franchise lasted only 38 days in Buffalo when, on December 25, 1946, Leo Ferris, the team's general manager, announced that the team would be moving to Moline, which at that time was part of an area known as the "Tri-Cities": Moline, Rock Island and Davenport, Iowa. Upon relocation to Moline, the team was renamed the Tri-Cities Blackhawks, played their home games at Wharton Field House, a 6,000-seat arena in Moline; the team featured guard/forward and coach Deanglo King, was owned by Leo Ferris and Ben Kerner. Pop Gates remained on the Blackhawks roster, finished second on the team in scoring behind future 1948 NBL MVP Don Otten. A Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame member, Gates helped to integrate the league and become the first African-American coach in a major sports league, coaching Dayton in 1948.
In 1949 the Blackhawks became one of the National Basketball Association's 17 original teams after a merger of the 12-year-old NBL and the three-year-old Basketball Association of America. They reached the playoffs in the NBA's inaugural year under the leadership of coach Red Auerbach; the following season, they drafted three-time All-American Bob Cousy, but they were unable to reach a deal and traded him to the Chicago Stags. The Blackhawks missed the playoffs. By it was obvious that the Tri-Cities area was too small to support an NBA team. After the season, the franchise relocated to Milwaukee and became the Milwaukee Hawks. In 1954, the Hawks drafted Bob Pettit, a future NBA MVP. Despite this, the Hawks were one of the league's worst teams, in 1955 the Hawks moved, this time to St. Louis, Milwaukee's rival in the beer industry, became the St. Louis Hawks. In 1956, the St. Louis Hawks drafted legendary Bill Russell in the first round, they traded Russell to the Boston Celtics for Cliff Hagan and Ed Macauley, both Hall of Fame members.
In 1957, the Hawks finished four games under.500. However, the Western Division was weak that year, they won the division title and a bye to the division finals after defeating the Minneapolis Lakers and Fort Wayne Pistons in one-game tiebreakers. They defeated the Lakers in the division finals to advance to the Finals, losing to the Boston Celtics in a double-overtime thriller in game seven. In 1958, after tallying their first winning record, they again advanced to the Finals, where they avenged their defeat against the Celtics from the previous year, winning the series 4–2 and giving the Hawks their first and only NBA Championship. Bob Pettit scored 50 points in the final game of the series; the Hawks remained one of the NBA's premier teams for the next decade. In 1960, under coach Ed Macauley, the team advanced to the Finals, but lost to the Celtics in another game seven thriller; the following year, with the acquisition of rookie Lenny Wilkens, the Hawks repeated their success, but met the Celtics in the Finals again and lost in five games.
They would remain contenders for most of the 1960s, advancing deep into the playoffs a
University of Florida
The University of Florida is an American public land-grant, sea-grant, space-grant research university in Gainesville, United States. It is a senior member of the State University System of Florida; the university traces its origins to 1853 and has operated continuously on its Gainesville campus since September 1906. The University of Florida is one of sixty-two elected member institutions of the Association of American Universities, the association of preeminent North American research universities, the only AAU member university in Florida; the university is classified as a Research University with Very High Research by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. After the Florida state legislature's creation of performance standards in 2013, the Florida Board of Governors designated the University of Florida as one of the three "preeminent universities" among the twelve universities of the State University System of Florida. For 2019, U. S. News & World Report ranked Florida as the eighth best public university in the United States.
The university is accredited by the Southern Association of Schools. It is the third largest Florida university by student population, is the eighth largest single-campus university in the United States with 54,906 students enrolled for the fall 2018 semester; the University of Florida is home to sixteen academic colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes. It offers multiple graduate professional programs—including business administration, law, medicine and veterinary medicine—on one contiguous campus, administers 123 master's degree programs and seventy-six doctoral degree programs in eighty-seven schools and departments; the university's seal is the seal of the state of Florida, on the state flag. The University of Florida's intercollegiate sports teams known by their "Florida Gators" nickname, compete in National Collegiate Athletic Association Division I and the Southeastern Conference. In their 111-year history, the university's varsity sports teams have won 41 national team championships, 36 of which are NCAA titles, Florida athletes have won 275 individual national championships.
In addition, University of Florida students and alumni have won 126 Olympic medals including 60 gold medals. The University of Florida traces its origins to 1853, when the East Florida Seminary, the oldest of the University of Florida's four predecessor institutions, was founded in Ocala, Florida. On January 6, 1853, Governor Thomas Brown signed a bill that provided public support for higher education in Florida. Gilbert Kingsbury was the first person to take advantage of the legislation, established the East Florida Seminary, which operated until the outbreak of the Civil War in 1861; the East Florida Seminary was Florida's first state-supported institution of higher learning. James Henry Roper, an educator from North Carolina and a state senator from Alachua County, had opened a school in Gainesville, the Gainesville Academy, in 1858. In 1866, Roper offered his land and school to the State of Florida in exchange for the East Florida Seminary's relocation to Gainesville; the second major precursor to the University of Florida was the Florida Agricultural College, established at Lake City by Jordan Probst in 1884.
Florida Agricultural College became the state's first land-grant college under the Morrill Act. In 1903, the Florida Legislature, desiring to expand the school's outlook and curriculum beyond its agricultural and engineering origins, changed the name of Florida Agricultural College to the "University of Florida," a name the school would hold for only two years. In 1905, the Florida Legislature passed the Buckman Act, which consolidated the state's publicly supported higher education institutions; the member of the legislature who wrote the act, Henry Holland Buckman became the namesake of Buckman Hall, one of the first buildings constructed on the new university's campus. The Buckman Act organized the State University System of Florida and created the Florida Board of Control to govern the system, it abolished the six pre-existing state-supported institutions of higher education, consolidated the assets and academic programs of four of them to form the new "University of the State of Florida."
The four predecessor institutions consolidated to form the new university included the University of Florida at Lake City in Lake City, the East Florida Seminary in Gainesville, the St. Petersburg Normal and Industrial School in St. Petersburg, the South Florida Military College in Bartow; the Buckman Act consolidated the colleges and schools into three institutions segregated by race and gender—the University of the State of Florida for white men, the Florida Female College for white women, the State Normal School for Colored Students for African-American men and women. The City of Gainesville, led by its Mayor William Reuben Thomas, campaigned to be home to the new university. On July 6, 1905, the Board of Control selected Gainesville for the new university campus. Andrew Sledd, president of the pre-existing University of Florida at Lake City, was selected to be the first president of the new University of the State of Florida; the 1905-1906 academic year was a year of transition. Architect William A. Edwards designed the first official campus buildings in the Collegiate Gothic style.
Classes began on the new Gainesville campus with 102 students enrolled. In 1909, the school's name
University of Kansas
The University of Kansas referred to as KU, is a public research university with its main campus in Lawrence and several satellite campuses and educational centers, medical centers, classes across the state of Kansas. Two branch campuses are in the Kansas City metropolitan area on the Kansas side: the university's medical school and hospital in Kansas City, the Edwards Campus in Overland Park, a hospital and research center in the state's capital of Topeka. There are educational and research sites in Garden City, Leavenworth and Topeka, branches of the medical school in Salina and Wichita; the university is one of the 62 members of the Association of American Universities. Founded March 21, 1865, the university was opened in 1866, under a charter granted by the Kansas State Legislature in 1864 following enabling legislation passed in 1863 under the State Constitution, adopted two years after the 1861 admission of the former Kansas Territory as the 34th state into the Union following an internal civil war known as "Bleeding Kansas" during the 1850s.
Enrollment at the Lawrence and Edwards campuses was 28,401 students in 2016. The university overall employed 2,814 faculty members in fall 2015. On February 20, 1863, Kansas Governor Thomas Carney signed into law a bill creating the state university in Lawrence; the law was conditioned upon a gift from Lawrence of a $15,000 endowment fund and a site for the university, in or near the town, of not less than forty acres of land. If Lawrence failed to meet these conditions, Emporia instead of Lawrence would get the university; the site selected for the university was a hill known as Mount Oread, donated by Charles L. Robinson, Republican governor of the state of Kansas from 1861 to 1863, one of the original settlers of Lawrence, Kansas. Robinson and his wife Sara bestowed the 40-acre site to the State of Kansas in exchange for land elsewhere; the philanthropist Amos Adams Lawrence donated $10,000 of the necessary endowment fund, the citizens of Lawrence raised the remaining money themselves via private donations.
On November 2, 1863, Governor Carney announced Lawrence had met the conditions to get the state university, the following year the university was organized. The school's Board of Regents held its first meeting in March 1865, the event that KU dates its founding from. Work on the first college building began that year; the university opened for classes on September 12, 1866, the first class graduated in 1873. According to William L. Burdick, the first degree awarded by the university was a Doctor of Divinity, bestowed upon noted abolitionist preacher Richard Cordley. During World War II, Kansas was one of 131 colleges and universities nationally that took part in the V-12 Navy College Training Program which offered students a path to a Navy commission. KU is home to the Robert J. Dole Institute of Politics, the Beach Center on Disability, Lied Center of Kansas and radio stations KJHK, 90.7 FM, KANU, 91.5 FM. The university is host to several museums including the University of Kansas Natural History Museum and the Spencer Museum of Art.
The libraries of the University include Watson Library, Kenneth Spencer Research Library, the Murphy Art and Architecture Library, Thomas Gorton Music & Dance Library, Anschutz Library. Of athletic note, the university is home to Allen Fieldhouse, heralded as one of the greatest basketball arenas in the world, David Booth Kansas Memorial Stadium; the University of Kansas is a state-sponsored university with five campuses. KU is a member of the Association of American Universities and it is classified among "R-1: Doctoral Universities – Highest Research Activity" by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. KU features the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, which includes the School of the Arts and the School of Public Affairs & Administration; the university offers more than 345 degree programs. In its 2018 list, U. S. News & World Report ranked KU as tied for 115th place among National Universities and 53rd place among public universities; the city management and urban policy program was ranked first in the nation, the special education program second, by U.
S. News & World Report's 2016 rankings. USN&WR ranked several programs in the top 25 among U. S. universities. The University of Kansas School of Architecture and Design, with its main building being Marvin Hall, traces its architectural roots to the creation of the architectural engineering degree program in KU's School of Engineering in 1912; the Bachelor of Architecture degree was added in 1920. In 1969 the School of Architecture and Urban Design was formed with three programs: architecture, architectural engineering, urban planning. In 2001 architectural engineering merged with environmental engineering; the design programs from the discontinued School of Fine Arts were merged into the school in 2009 forming the School of Architecture and Planning with three departments. In 2017, the Urban Planning department merged into KU's School of Public Affairs and Administration. Accordingly, the SADP was renamed to the School of Design. According to the journal DesignIntelligence, which annually publishes "America's Best Architecture and Design Schools," the School of Architecture and Design at the University of Kansas was named the best in the Midwest and ranked 11t
Jeff Green (basketball)
Jeffrey Lynn Green is an American professional basketball player for the Washington Wizards of the National Basketball Association. He played three seasons of college basketball for the Georgetown Hoyas, before entering the 2007 NBA draft, where he was selected fifth overall by the Boston Celtics, he was subsequently traded to the Seattle SuperSonics. He spent 3½ seasons with the franchise before being traded back to the Celtics in February 2011, where he played until 2015 before being traded to the Memphis Grizzlies. In 2016, he was traded to the Los Angeles Clippers, he spent half a season with the Clippers before joining the Orlando Magic following the 2015–16 season. Green joined the Cleveland Cavaliers and the Wizards. Green was born in Maryland, to Jeffrey Green Sr. and Felicia Akingube. He attended Northwestern High School in Hyattsville, where he led the NHS Wildcats to the state basketball championship in 2004. Green was recruited to Georgetown University by coach Craig Esherick in 2003.
Esherick was fired before Green arrived on campus and John Thompson III was hired as the new coach. The two top recruits of Esherick's tenure and center Roy Hibbert, were the key components of Thompson's future success. Thompson stated in a Sports Illustrated interview: "You'll stop and think when I say this, but it's true: Jeff Green is the smartest player I've coached. You would know this better than most: that's a hell of a statement."Green won the 2005 Big East Rookie of the Year award along with Rudy Gay of the University of Connecticut. He was named to the All-Big East Second Team in 2006 along with teammate Roy Hibbert. In 2007, Green was named the Big East Player of the Year, he and Hibbert were unanimous selections to the All-Big East First Team. After his 30-point performance in the 2007 Big East Tournament semifinal against Notre Dame and his 21-point performance in the championship against Pittsburgh, Green was named Most Outstanding Player of the tournament, as the Hoyas won their first Big East title since 1989.
He led the Hoyas to the Final Four of the 2007 NCAA Tournament, beating Belmont and Boston College in the first two rounds. Green beat Vanderbilt with a game-winning shot in the game's closing seconds as well as fearlessly leading the Hoyas to victory against No. 1 seed UNC in a stunning second-half comeback victory and bringing the Hoyas back to their first Final Four since Patrick Ewing led them to the 1985 National Championship game. The Hoyas lost to Greg Oden and the Ohio State Buckeyes, bringing their remarkable title run to a close as well as Green's collegiate playing career, as he chose to forgo his senior year and entered the NBA draft. Green spent the next four summers taking classes at Georgetown and graduated in 2012 with a degree in English and a minor in theology. On June 28, 2007, Green was selected with the fifth overall pick in the 2007 NBA draft by the Boston Celtics, he was traded to the Seattle SuperSonics alongside Wally Szczerbiak and Delonte West in exchange for Ray Allen and Glen Davis.
On April 6, 2008, Green scored a career-high 35 points against the Denver Nuggets. Green made the NBA All-Rookie First Team in 2008 after averaging 10.5 points, 4.7 rebounds and 1.5 assists in 80 games. The Sonics were sold and moved to Oklahoma City before the start of the 2008–09 season, becoming the Thunder. In January 2009, Green hit his first career game-winner, lifting the Thunder to a 122–121 win over the Golden State Warriors. In 2009 -- 10, Green started in all 82 games. On December 1, 2010, he set a new career high with 37 points against the New Jersey Nets. On February 24, 2011, Green was traded, along with Nenad Krstić and a 2012 first-round pick, to the Boston Celtics in exchange for Kendrick Perkins and Nate Robinson. Green recorded a double-double in his first start as a Celtic against the Washington Wizards on April 11, 2011, recording 20 points, a career high-tying 15 rebounds, four assists and two steals. Green improved his field goal percentage after the trade to the Celtics, shooting 48.5 percent from the floor in 26 games after shooting 43.7 percent with the Thunder.
On December 10, 2011, following the conclusion of the NBA lockout, Green re-signed with the Celtics. Eight days his contract was voided by the Celtics after a routine physical examination detected an aortic aneurysm, he subsequently missed the entire 2011 -- 12 season. Former teammate Kevin Durant dedicated his season to Green. Green used his downtime not only to rehab from surgery but to complete his coursework at Georgetown, graduating in May 2012 with a degree in English and a minor in theology. On August 22, 2012, Green signed with the Celtics to a deal rumored to be for four years and $36 million. On March 18, 2013, Green scored a career-high 43 points in a 105–103 loss to the Miami Heat. On April 3, 2013, he scored 34 points against the Detroit Pistons. In 2013–14, Green played and started in all 82 games for the Celtics following the departure of Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett in the off-season, he subsequently had a career-best season. On January 22, he scored 39 points against the Wizards.
On March 16 against the New Orleans Pelicans, he had a second 39-point game. Over the first two months of the 2014–15 season, Green averaged a career-best 17.6 points per game. On January 12, 2015, Green was traded to the Memphis Grizzlies in a three-team deal involving the Celtics and the New Orleans Pelicans, he made his debut for the Grizzlies two days recording 10 points and 3 rebounds off the bench in a 103–92 win over the Brooklyn Nets. On June 18, 2015, Green exercised his player option with the Grizzlies for the 2015–16 season. On Dece
The Seattle SuperSonics known as the Sonics, were an American professional basketball team based in Seattle, Washington. The SuperSonics played in the National Basketball Association as a member club of the league's Western Conference Pacific and Northwest divisions from 1967 until 2008. After the 2007–08 season ended, the team relocated to Oklahoma City and now plays as the Oklahoma City Thunder. Sam Schulman owned the team from its 1967 inception until 1983, it was owned by Barry Ackerley, Basketball Club of Seattle, headed by Starbucks chairman emeritus, former president and CEO Howard Schultz. On July 18, 2006, the Basketball Club of Seattle sold the SuperSonics and its Women's National Basketball Association sister franchise Seattle Storm to the Professional Basketball Club LLC, headed by Oklahoma City businessman Clay Bennett; the sale was approved by the NBA Board of Governors on October 24, 2006, finalized on October 31, 2006, at which point the new ownership group took control. After failing to find public funding to construct a new arena in the Seattle area, the SuperSonics moved to Oklahoma City before the 2008–09 season, following a $45 million settlement with the city of Seattle to pay off the team's existing lease at KeyArena at Seattle Center in advance of its 2010 expiration.
Home games were played at KeyArena known as Seattle Center Coliseum, for 33 of the franchise's 41 seasons in Seattle. In 1978, the team moved to the Kingdome, shared with the Seattle Mariners of Major League Baseball and the Seattle Seahawks of the National Football League, they returned to the Coliseum full-time in 1985, moving temporarily to the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, for the 1994–95 season while the Coliseum was renovated and rebranded as KeyArena. The SuperSonics won the NBA championship in 1979. Overall, the franchise won three Western Conference titles: 1978, 1979, 1996; the franchise won six divisional titles, their last being in 2005, with five in the Pacific Division and one in the Northwest Division. Settlement terms of a lawsuit between the city of Seattle and Clay Bennett's ownership group stipulated the SuperSonics' banners and retired jerseys remain in Seattle; the SuperSonics' franchise history, would be shared with the Thunder. On December 20, 1966, Los Angeles businessmen Sam Schulman and Eugene V. Klein, who both owned the AFL's San Diego Chargers at the time, a group of minority partners were awarded an NBA franchise for the city of Seattle.
Schulman would serve as the active head of team operations. He named the SuperSonics after Boeing's awarded contract for the SST project, canceled; the SuperSonics were Seattle's first major league sports franchise. Beginning play on October 13, 1967, the SuperSonics were coached by Al Bianchi and featured All-Star guard Walt Hazzard and NBA All-Rookie Team members Bob Rule and Al Tucker; the expansion team stumbled out of the gates with a 144–116 loss in their first game in San Francisco against the San Francisco Warriors. The team got their first win on October 21, their third game of the season in San Diego against the San Diego Rockets in overtime 117–110, finished the season with a 23–59 record. Hazzard was traded to the Atlanta Hawks before the start of the next season for Lenny Wilkens. Wilkens brought a strong all-around game to the SuperSonics, averaging 22.4 points, 8.2 assists, 6.2 rebounds per game for Seattle in the 1968–69 season. Rule, improved on his rookie statistics with 24.0 points per game and 11.5 rebounds per game.
The SuperSonics, only won 30 games and Bianchi was replaced by Wilkens as player/coach during the offseason. Wilkens and Rule both represented Seattle in the 1970 NBA All-Star Game, Wilkens led the NBA in assists during the 1969–70 season. In June 1970 the NBA owners voted 13–4 to work toward a merger with the ABA; the Oscar Robertson suit delayed the merger, the SuperSonics remained in Seattle. Early in the 1970–71 season, Rule tore his Achilles' tendon and was lost for the rest of the year. Wilkens was named the 1971 All-Star Game MVP, but the big news of the season came when owner Sam Schulman managed to land American Basketball Association Rookie of the Year and MVP Spencer Haywood following a lengthy court battle; the following season, the SuperSonics went on to record their first winning season at 47–35. The team, led by player-coach Wilkens and First Team forward Haywood, held a 46–27 mark on March 3, but late season injuries to starters Haywood, Dick Snyder, Don Smith contributed to the team losing eight of its final nine games.
For the 1972–73 season, Wilkens was dealt to Cleveland in a unpopular trade, without his leadership the SuperSonics fell to a 26–56 record. One of the few bright spots of the season was Haywood's second consecutive All-NBA First Team selection, as he averaged a SuperSonics record 29.2 points per game and collected 12.9 rebounds per game. The legendary Bill Russell was hired as the head coach in the following year, in 1975 he coached the SuperSonics to the playoffs for the firs