In case you missed it, Kevin Durant was recently named GQ’s “Champion of the Year”. The honor made him one of the publication’s four “New American Heroes”, joining some elite company: Colin Kaepernick, Gal Gadot, and Stephen Colbert.
After the honor was given out, a remarkable article was published. It follows the Golden State superstar on his summer trip to India, and through the turbulent social media ride that was his offseason.
The entire piece is full of fascinating insights and quotes, but one stood out in particular. When Durant signed with the Warriors, many questioned how a team with so many leaders and basketball alphas would succeed. It turns out that part of the key is having everyone know their different leadership styles and roles.
Just check out this excerpt:
“I came here to play basketball in the exact same way I'm playing it right now,” he said contentedly. Over the summer, he'd signed a second deal with the Warriors, for less money than he could've asked for, and the Warriors had in turn used the money he saved them to re-sign several of Durant's teammates. He was enjoying being just a member of a team, rather than the face of it. “Steph Curry is the face of the franchise, and that helps me out, because I don't have to,” he said. “I don't want to have to be the leader. I'm not a leader. I'm bad at saying, ‘Stand behind me and follow me.’ No. I'm one of those guys that's just like, ‘Let's do this shit together. Let's just work everybody together. I don't mind being on the front line with you, but let's come and do it together.’ That's my way of leadership. I'm leading by example.”
The whole article is worth a read. It reminds us just how human these players are, even when they’re making millions and achieving stunning athletic feats. And it offers a detailed look into the life and mind of one of the game’s greatest players.