Durant: Oft-injured Oden ‘not a bust’
Warriors superstar Kevin Durant has a message for Greg Oden, who told ESPN last week that he’ll “be remembered as the biggest bust in NBA history.”
“That’s nonsense," Durant adamantly said on the network Sunday night. “In order for you to be a bust, you have to actually play. He didn’t get a chance to.”
Oden and Durant were taken No. 1 and No. 2 in the 2007 NBA draft by the Trail Blazers and Seattle SuperSonics. Oden missed his entire rookie season after undergoing microfracture surgery on his knee. Multiple knee injuries led to multiple surgical procedures, cutting his career short.
“He’s not a bust, Durant said. “He just didn’t play a long time because of injuries, and that’s just what it is. When he did play, he was a force.”
Former Heat guard Mario Chalmers is on target to be cleared for full basketball activity this week, eight months after rupturing his right Achilles tendon. ... The Raptors’ DeMar DeRozan and Rockets’ James Harden were named Eastern and Western Conference players of the week for the week ending Sunday. DeRozan averaged 34.7 points per game, while Harden averaged 27 points, 14.3 assists and 9.7 rebounds.
NHL meetings are set for this week to discuss whether the league will participate in the 2018 Olympics in South Korea.
League officials will meet with the International Ice Hockey Federation on Wednesday in New York. Deputy commissioner Bill Daly said the NHL hopes to learn if any traction has been gained between the IIHF and the International Olympic Committee with regard to potential sticking points, including money issues. NHL officials have expressed concerns that the IOC is not willing to cover out-of-pocket payments it took care of at the last five Olympics.
NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said those costs were upward of $10 million during a two-week hiatus next season.
“I can’t imagine the NHL owners are willing to pay for the privilege of shutting down for 17 days,” Bettman said. “I just don’t see that.”
Bettman said a decision would need to be made on the Pyeongchang Games by early January at the latest.