After the controversial summer of 2016, All-Star forward Kevin Durant made headlines once again in the 2019 NBA offseason when he decided to part ways with the Golden State Warriors. Despite strong efforts from the Warriors’ front office to convince him to stay, Durant still ended up leaving Golden State to team up with Kyrie Irving on the Brooklyn Nets.
In a recent appearance on Bleacher Report’s How Hungry Are You?, via YouTube, Kevin Durant discussed several topics, including his departure from the Thunder and the Warriors. When asked by his former teammate, Serge Ibaka, which of the two NBA teams was harder to leave, it didn’t take long before Durant gave him an answer.
“Oh, leaving OKC for sure,” Durant told Ibaka, as quoted by NBC Sports. “I mean, I spent eight years there. I built my family there. You know what I’m saying? My whole family lived out there. I done bought houses and did everything there, you know what I’m saying? Like grew up as — in my 20s. So, it was hard to leave that place and leave like all the equipment guys — everybody there, the support staff and obviously my teammates. Well, they understood. I figured y’all would understand because that’s just business, but, like, the other people, I felt a way about and it took me a while to make the decision.”
Kevin Durant’s answer isn’t surprising at all. The Thunder was the team that selected Durant as the No. 2 overall pick in the 2007 NBA Draft, and he spent the first nine years of his NBA career there. Though he failed to help the Thunder win an NBA championship title, Durant achieved numerous milestones in Oklahoma City, and they were the team that turned him into one of the best active players in the league.
However, compared to his departure from the Warriors, Kevin Durant’s exit from the Thunder was more dramatic. While Stephen Curry, Draymond Green, and Klay Thompson fully supported his decision to join the Nets, Durant earned plenty of criticisms for leaving the Thunder for the Warriors in the summer of 2016. Most of his Thunder teammates and fans were extremely disappointed by his decision, saying that Durant took the easier road to win an NBA championship title.
None of those things matter to Kevin Durant right now. As of now, his focus is to help the Nets fully dominate the Eastern Conference and end their decades of title drought. Unfortunately, Nets’ fans won’t be seeing Durant in action anytime soon as he’s expected to spend the entire 2019-20 NBA season recovering from an Achilles injury.