Some of you might remember this Monday, when I posted an article about Brent Byers getting fired as a Stormchaser for posting a video about Thundering his butt off. The article turned out to be the most popular in the history of this website, and got picked up the next day by more major NBA blogging players, such as Yahoo! Sports Ball Don't Lie and The Basketball Jones. On Wednesday, the video was featured on the Lost Ogle and Kelly Ogle's "My Two Cents". On Thursday, Brent was actually interviewed by KFOR and KWTV, the latter interview which can be seen below:
What's cool about this whole thing is how Brent took the high road. He didn't want the team's name to be slandered in any way, and he encouraged people to go to games. In the end, Brent just wanted to get his video out there, and he was proud to live the dream for four years. I can appreciate that. So many people would act like they hated the Thunder after this incident, or try to further their own agenda. This just shows that he's an all-around solid dude.
Details-wise, he admits that it was in his contract that he couldn't use "social media" to post anything negative about the team, but the sketch shown just before the video was supposedly just so he could have an excuse for wearing that mask. And, as it turns out, the Thunder weren't angry about the content of the video itself. They simply didn't like the introduction, which established that he worked for the Thunder. This would seem to be pretty in line of what I know about how the Thunder operate behind the scenes, having been inside the guts of the arena and talked to employees myself. Obviously, they don't like it when their image is slandered in a negative way, but they also don't like it when employees give a bit too much detail about how things are put together or voice their own opinion about team matters. The firing of Brent falls somewhere along those lines.
But the question remains: Where do we go from here? Well, it's pretty apparent that even after the national attention, the Thunder won't be re-hiring Brent. But, moving forward, hopefully this whole news shebang will inspire some positive change in the Thunder organization. I'm not expecting, or even asking for some wholesale change within the ranks. Still, it would be nice to see them ease up the reigns a bit on what can and can't be said about the team. Keeping a family image is all well and good, but there's a thin line between keeping things G rated and covering up people's true nature.
In the end, all I'm saying is that the Thunder should let Perk be Perk, and let Brent be Brent. If they don't criticize the team, where's the harm?