Kevin Durant is synonymous with burner accounts and sensitivity to criticism.
The former Warrior had a great three-year run with the team, making the NBA Finals three times, winning two championships while being named Finals MVP both times.
There was plenty of drama as well, with Durant and Draymond Green getting into arguments on the court and KD’s propensity for fake Twitter accounts.
The Athletic’s Ethan Strauss covers the Dubs and wrote a book titled ““The Victory Machine: The Making and Unmaking of the Warriors Dynasty”
In it, Strauss details how Durant reacted when he saw the love Mo Speights, when he returned to play the Dubs for the first time since who signing with the L.A. Clippers.
Strauss wrote (h/t NBC Bay Area’s Drew Shiller):
“You did not have to be a star or rising star to draw KD’s envious ire. When former Warriors bench scorer Marreese Speights returned to Oracle Arena, he got a hearty ovation from the crowd. “Mo Buckets” had been a fan favorite, in part due to his tremendous shooting streaks and also due to the broad smile he beamed when riding a wave. He wasn’t a flawless player but his enthusiasm was infectious and the fans were nostalgic for it.
KD, who once complained to a Warriors fan account over Twitter Direct Message that Speights was among the players more accepted by Warriors fans than he, was not pleased.
After the blowout win that followed, as he waited to take the podium stage, Durant was fixated on a TV that hung from the wall. Speights was with the local TV guys, yukking it up. “Mo Buckets,” Durant loudly groused, shaking his head. “How can you call yourself ‘Mo Buckets’ when you never averaged twenty points a game?”
Speights had a special place with Warriors fans. His heat-check moments were so fun to watch.
Strauss adds Durant’s envy of the appreciation Steph Curry receives. In argument with a fan on Twitter, KD says fans were, “favoring Steph at his expense.”
“He expressed that this was a constant theme in the Bay,” Strauss wrote about Durant. “All of us local guys just wanted to kiss Steph’s a– at his expense. This was KD’s consistent lament.”
From a strictly basketball perspective, Durant fit in seamlessly with the Splash Brothers and Green. The Warriors ball movement and chemistry was unparalleled during Durant’s time. Just look at the results.
But, there was something off about how Durant looked with the Dubs from a personality standpoint.
I remember after Golden State swept the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2018, seeing Curry, Thompson and Green holding up three fingers during the celebration, representing the number of championships each had and Durant looking like he didn’t know what do.
The Dubs were awesome without Durant, but it is undeniable he took the team to another level.
Steph, Klay and Draymond are homegrown guys. Fans watched them come up together and help turn the franchise into a juggernaut.
There was nothing Durant could do to change that. Instead of accepting it, he chose to let it eat away at him, which resulted in him signing a four-year deal with the Brooklyn Nets in the offseason.
If Durant doesn’t get hurt in the playoffs last season, the Warriors would have won three years in a row, yet it still seems like that wouldn’t have been enough for KD to stick around.
How do you feel about Durant being this sensitive?