If it weren't for LeBron James, this would be Kevin Durant’s league. Since being drafted in 2007, Durant has become one of the greatest modern day scorers and one of the most likeable personalities in the NBA. Durant attended the University of Texas for one year before declaring for the draft, and he was selected second overall by the Seattle Supersonics, behind Greg Oden. It was clear Durant was going to be a star from the get go, taking home the Rookie of the Year award and producing a number of memorable performances, including a game winning shot against the Hawks in November. The Sonics and Durant relocated the following year to Oklahoma to become the Thunder, and this has now become Durant’s franchise.
KD, at just 26, seems to continue to improve in all aspects of his game each year, making him a deadly player and one that causes huge problems for the opposition due to his height (6 ft 9), speed, and shooting ability. His length also makes him an excellent defender, and he is able to play a number of positions too. In the last few years, the Thunder have surrounded Durant with a talented squad, and are now one of the top franchises in a tough Western Conference. They made it to the NBA finals in the lockout shortened 2011/12 season, but fell to the Heat in just five games, and they have yet to return.
It is not just Durant’s supreme on-court abilities that make him one of the most likable players in the league; he is also a modest, down to earth, generous, and positive role model. This is refreshing to see in a league which is generally populated with stars with big egos, so it is clear why Durant is so popular. This is best demonstrated by his moving and inspirational MVP acceptance speech at the end of the 2014 season, with hardly a dry eye in the house by the end.
Although one of the “nice guys” in the NBA, Durant is a fierce competitor with ice flowing through his veins when he steps onto the court. This makes him an interesting character, so here are 15 interesting facts about KD.
15 He Attends College in the Off-season to Finish his Degree
14 He Plans to Become a Music Producer After he Retires
13 His Famous Backpack Contains a Bible, iPad, Headphones and Phone Charger
12 He Became the First SuperSonic to Win Rookie of the Year
11 He Wears Number 35 to Honor his First Coach who was Murdered at 35
10 He Turned Down a Larger Contract From Adidas as he has Worn Nike’s his Entire Life
9 He was Friends with Ty Lawson, Michael Beasley and Greivis Vasquez Growing Up
8 The University of Texas Retired his Jersey Despite him Playing Just One Season
7 He Became Just the Third Teenager to Average Over 20 PPG
6 He has Giant Tattoos on his Torso
5 He Donated $1 Million to the Red Cross for Tornado Relief
4 He has a Wingspan of 7’4
3 He Became the Youngest Player to Join the 50-40-90 Club
2 He Played Intramural Flag Football with Oklahoma State Students
1 His Dream was to Teach Kids How to Play Basketball
Kevin Durant’s emotional MVP speech was incredibly moving and gave us a real insight into his life. We learnt a lot about Durant during his speech, who has always been quiet about his life before. One of the most interesting parts was where he talked about his difficult upbringing, with his mother raising him and his brother when she was just 21 years old. A young Durant could never see a way out and aspired to be a rec league coach, helping others to play the game that he loves. Fast forward to today, KD is reigning MVP and inspiring an entire generation not just to play basketball, but to be the best person that they can be.
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