Durant still loves Oklahoma City
Former Thunder star insists he’s still committed to the city he left, even if fans are miffed
As much as it still hurts for so many Oklahomans to see Kevin Durant shine elsewhere, the Golden State star remains committed to the community he called home for nearly a decade. The place where he grew into the basketball player he is today, and the man he has become.
KD departed Oklahoma City with fanfare on the 4th of July last year to chase a championship with Stephen Curry and the star-studded Warriors.
So when he goes back Saturday night for the first time, it will be far from a perfectly harmonious reunion. And that’s fine with Durant. He gets it, he understands what he meant to a city that so desperately needed the lift he provided.
“I put everything into that place, so it will be great to see some people that I haven’t seen in a while,” he said. “So I’m looking forward to that.”
In December, Durant donated $57,000 to Positive Tomorrows, an Oklahoma City elementary school for homeless children that he still cares so much about — and insists he always will, wherever he is. So far, he has honoured that commitment after previously giving $35,000 to the school through his foundation.
But did Durant have to join the Warriors, of all teams? The franchise that somehow rallied from a 3-1 deficit to beat the Thunder in a thrilling Western Conference Finals last June?
Golden State has already beaten Durant’s old team handily twice this season — by 47 combined points. Durant has been brilliant in those games: 79 points on 28for-40 shooting.
There are certain to be mixed feelings when he enters Chesapeake Energy Arena again. So stung were some fans by his decision, they burned his No. 35 jersey and turned to calling him a coward.
“It’s good to see everybody, but once the ball’s tipped you’re just playing, just hooping. It’s as simple as that,” he said.