Kevin Durant joined a Warriors team that won a championship without him, set the record for an apparently unbreakable season in the league with 72 victories, and beat Durant in the conference final a few months ahead of schedule.
So even though Durant ultimately became MVP of the NBA Finals twice and the best player in the Warriors dynasty, he never felt like his team. Obviously, Durant felt the same.
In an extract from Ethan Sherwood Strauss’s Warriors book, “The Victory Machine: The Making and Unmaking of the Warriors Dynasty”, published recently, Durant is detailed as challenging the popularity of his teammate Steph Curry, “at his expense”.
In a post-match argument between Durant and Strauss – sparked by a reporter article describing Golden State’s need on the field to appease the then-free freelance player – the superstar accused the reporter of to have tried to “anger Steph fans. “
Durant, who signed the $ 164 million four-year contract with the Nets’ off-season, also argued on social media with fans who, he said, unfairly “favored Steph at his expense”.
“He expressed that it was a constant theme in the bay,” wrote Strauss of Durant, who is known to quarrel with fans on Twitter. “We local guys just wanted to kiss Steph’s at his expense. It was KD’s constant lament. “
One of the most gifted offensive players in the history of basketball has been consummated only by critics.
“The guys were mad at me before, but not like that. They had shown anger, but did not betray any obsession, “wrote Strauss. “In general, you get a burst of contempt, but the underlying idea is that you are a piss who, after the initial transgression, is not worth thinking about.
“KD made you feel like he thought more of you than he did you. He almost flattered you with his resentment. Or, it would be flattering if the wickedness was not so focused on KD. You were hated only to the extent that you thought of him. “