LeBron James and Kevin Durant‘s names have been closely related for the past several seasons. They are respectively the top two players in the entire league. There are not many people who will debate that statement if they’ve been watching basketball recently. Durant has sat back and learned a lot from James since his departure from the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2010.
Unlike LeBron, Durant decided to stay put, signing a multiyear extension with the Oklahoma City Thunder a year after James made history with “The Decision”. Durant watched how much dissension James endured when he made the move to the Miami Heat. James’ image will never recover from his choice to turn his back on his hometown team. Durant wanted nothing to do with the negative attention, so he calmly made his decision to stay loyal to the team that drafted him.
Loyalty isn’t something that is too common in the NBA today. James has become the poster-child for free-agency mishaps since his initial departure. Now, James is nearing the end of the free-agency frenzy as he prepares to make the second biggest decision in his career thus far. Fans are torn between whether James is right for leaving or wrong for seeking out more championships with any team other than the Heat.
I guess fans do not want to cheer on a player who has no loyalty to their team. Even if LeBron signs with another team, or stays with the Heat, no one will be able to trust him to stay put for long. He’ll just continue to jump around in hopes of getting enough NBA Championships to one day be considered better than greats like Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant — who unlike James, stayed put and won multiple championships with their teams.
Honestly, James already ruined his legacy when he jumped ship to the Heat. Durant will not follow James’ example when his contract expires at the end of the 2015-16 NBA season. Durant was smart enough to prove to NBA fans that he has some loyalty within him. Regardless of what happens in Oklahoma City, Durant stuck around and gave it his all. He can now leave OKC without being scolded by the fans and media like James.