Quietly – no TV show – Durant makes call
Ex-Horn says he’ll stay with Thunder instead of becoming free agent next year
OKLAHOMA CITY — Kevin Durant didn’t go for a spectacle in announcing where he’ll be for the next five years. And he isn’t holding out for the glitz of a major media market, either.
Instead, the former Texas Longhorns star simply posted an update on his Twitter page Wednesday, saying he’d agreed to a five-year contract extension for $85 million with the Oklahoma City Thunder.
“Exstension for 5 more years wit the thunder. … God Is Great, me and my family came a long way. … I love yall man forreal, this a blessing!” Durant tweeted.
Another post soon followed, presumably about the contract: “First time i cried n a while. … Kevin Durant, the youngest player to lead the NBA in scoring, reupped with Oklahoma City for five years and $85 million. RIp Chucky, we doin wat we dreamed about … i swear i love all my bros!! yessir!!!
“Chucky” is one of Durant’s former coaches, Charles Craig, who was shot to death in Maryland in 2005.
Durant could have played this season in Oklahoma City, then become a free agent next year and latched onto the New York Knicks or one of the splashy big-market teams that had the salary-cap space.
But the reigning NBA scoring leader made the long-term commitment to the small-market club, a talented, young team that could be the most serious challenger to the Los Angeles Lakers in the Western Conference.
Durant’s spokeswoman, Mary Ford, said the maximum deal he will sign today has no opt-out clause after the fourth year, contradicting several Internet reports.
“He is obviously committed,” Ford said. “The small-market talk has never meant anything to Kevin. That kind of stuff is not important to him. What is important is his team, his teammates, growing, getting better and hopefully bringing a championship to Oklahoma City.”
Durant was the No. 2 overall pick in the 2007 draft and won the Rookie of the Year award. Last season, he averaged 30.1 points to become the youngest player to lead the league in scoring. He led the Thunder to a 50-32 record — a 27-win improvement over the previous season.