SUNDAY (AEDT) was an emotional night for not just Kevin Durant, but, for his mother too. Wanda Durant, whom you might remember as “the real MVP” during Kevin’s MVP award acceptance speech in 2014, was in attendance for his return to Oklahoma City.
You could see her support during one of Kevin’s seven free throws.
As the crowd boos Kevin Durant at the free throw line, his mother Wanda stands in support pic.twitter.com/FO8uhzFuCm
— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) February 12, 2017
Stepping into what is now enemy territory, you have to imagine Wanda was prepared for the verbal assault that was headed her family’s way — but, as reported by ESPN, the vitriol went above and beyond:
“The most vicious things you could say, they said about my son tonight,” Wanda Durant told ESPN.
“It’s hurtful. We poured our heart into this place. Not just him. Our family. This is basketball. This is not whether or not you’re going to make it into heaven. They called him a snake, a sellout, a b***h, it’s just a sad day.
“I understand that they loved him. I do understand it. But the name calling. The people with the cupcakes on their backs. It didn’t have to be like this.”
She said she was also heckled and targeted by Thunder supporters.
“This is not the first time I’ve been back since Kevin left,” she said.
“This is maybe my fourth or fifth time. Every time that I’ve been back, people seem like they are afraid to say something nice to me. People will whisper, “There’s his mum. Ooooooh!”
There are two schools of thought here: One, the angry Thunder fans and citizens of Oklahoma City who felt betrayed by Durant’s free agency decision had the right to express their frustrations. Two, while that may be true, there may be a line that cannot be crossed in regards to the content of the venomous words.
Regardless of which side you’re on: It was an emotional night at Chesapeake Energy Arena on Saturday, and Wanda Durant’s feelings, despite her favourite player coming out victorious, prove this wasn’t just any ordinary regular-season NBA game.
Durant and former teammate Russell Westbrook exchanged some heated words on court in the middle of the game.
The pair famously fell-out over Durant’s defection to the Warriors without so much as a phone call to his former brother-in-arms.
“I’m coming!” he barked at Durant as the teams headed to their benches during a time-out, and Durant chirped right back at him and his former teammates.
It turned out the action was just heating up: Minutes later, Durant took exception to a foul by Andre Roberson, and the two got in each other’s faces as things got chippy:
Westbrook scored 20 points in the third to keep the Thunder within striking range, giving him 41 through three quarters. But though the Thunder let KD and the Warriors know they weren’t rolling over, it still wasn’t enough as they fell, 130-114.