NBA Atlanta Hawks

2012-2013 Player Expectations: Kevin Durant

After the Game 5 loss to the Heat in the NBA finals, Kevin Durant said this about the season being over: “It hurts man. It hurts.”

However, LeBron James said it best after his loss in the finals to the Mavs: “At the moment it hurt so bad, but looking back, it was best the best thing that ever happened to me.”

James took the words out of my mouth. Over the years, it seems as if Durant gets drastically better every year, not only as a player, but as a leader. One of my favorite games of last year was Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals. The Thunder trailed by 18 heading into the half and it seemed like they were heading back to San Antonio for a Game 7. But there was this one voice every timeout saying, “Keep fighting, guys.” That voice was of three-time scoring champion Durant.

When people talk about Durant, a few words come to mind: talented, young, humble and grounded. The guy is as humble as they get and arguably the best player in the game right now. That combination is extremely hard to find
and the Oklahoma City Thunder is gifted to have Durant in the blue and yellow.

Whenever the Thunder need a clutch bucket, Oklahoma City goes straight to the hands of Durant and he always delivers. Durant was questioned about being a one-dimensional player in scoring. Last year, those questions were erased as Durant upped his assist numbers and lowered his points per game. When you think of a player who is unselfish and talented, Durant comes to mind.

2007-2008 Stats: 20.3 points per game,  4.4 rebounds per game

2008-2009 Stats: 25.3 points per game,  6.5 rebounds per game

2009-2010 Stats: 30.1 points per game,  7.6 rebounds per game

2010-2012 Stats: 27.7 points per game,  6.8 rebounds per game

2011-2012 Stats: 28.0 points per game, 8.0 rebounds per game

2012-2013 Projected Stats: 29 points per game,  9.0 rebounds per game

The future is endless for Kevin Durant and his Oklahoma City Thunder team, so now it’s a matter of when he will get his team their first ring.