The memories are still in Seattle. The team, and the playoff hardware it earned back in the Northwest, is now in Oklahoma City. Yeah, it’s an awkward time to be talking about the best playoff memories of Oklahoma City, which has only been in its new city four years, and when its former city is where all that magic happened. I don’t know how many fans of the Sonics have become full backers of the Thunder, but I can’t imagine it’s a majority.
But whether you’re a Sonics fan holding on to the best of times — even if this week, and seeing Clay Bennett four games from a title, represents the worst of them — or a Midwest dweller looking to claim some history as your own, this franchise has great Finals moments to choose from in its three appearances. Thus, here are the top five.
5. GARY PAYTON ROBS MICHAEL JORDAN
If there’s ever a classic play from Payton’s NBA career this is a finalist. Payton not only snakes a steal off of Jordan (in his shooting motion, which is damn tough) but then he dunks on the break and talks smack to finish it off. Ladies and gentlemen, this is Gary Payton.
In case you want more backstory on this matchup, you have to listen to GP himself deliver it.