NBA players have spoken of their relief after a charter plane apparently encountered a bird on a flight to Chicago.
No one was reported hurt in the incident and Oklahoma City Thunder players posted photos on social media showing the caved-in nose.
The Thunder were to play the Chicago Bulls on Saturday, local time.
“You never take anything for granted, just be thankful and blessed they we were able to land the plane and everything was OK,” Thunder star Russell Westbrook said.
“Seeing stuff like that just shows you how you need to cherish life and understand the important things in life and embrace every moment.”
Carmelo Anthony, Josh Huestis, and Steven Adams all posted photos of the plane shortly after it landed about 12.45am.
Anthony wrote on Instagram, “What possibly could we have hit in the SKY at this time of night? Everyone is Safe, Though.”
30000 feet in the air.
Flying to chicago.
What caused this? pic.twitter.com/uEVrEm7noi
— Steven Adams (@RealStevenAdams) October 28, 2017
Adams’ Twitter post said, “We had a rough flight to say the least.”
Huestis tweeted, “I guess we hit something? 30,000 feet up…”
Delta Airlines spokeswoman Elizabeth Wolf said maintenance was evaluating the situation and that the damage was likely caused by a collision with a bird.
She said the Boeing 757-200 landed safely without incident at Chicago’s Midway International Airport.
“Must’ve been a pretty big bird – a Pterodactyl maybe,” Thunder forward Nick Collison said.
Collison was watching the show Stranger Things when he felt the plane drop for a second like a “roller-coaster”.
“It’s one of those moments you bow your head and thank the man above,” Westbrook said.
Coach Billy Donovan said he was relieved the incident was not more serious.
“The plane dropped a little bit,” Donovan said.
“Then they just basically told us they were trying to get to a lower altitude because they maybe were concerned about the cabin pressure.
“We landed safely. Thank God everybody was safe.”