Kevin Durant warns tango with Stephen Curry just warming up
Kevin Durant, the Most Valuable Player of this year’s NBA Final victory for Golden State Warriors over Cleveland Cavaliers, says he still keeps a wary eye on the chasing pack of players to stay ahead of others.other sports Updated: Jul 28, 2017 23:27 IST
Kevin Durant is flying high these days. The power-packed performances of the 6’9” forward and his magical combination with Stephen Curry saw Golden State Warriors destroy the LeBron James-led Cleveland Cavaliers.
Perhaps the biggest name in the world of basketball currently, Durant was in the Indian capital on Friday, to interact with trainees at the NBA academy in Greater Noida.
The Warriors thrashed Cavaliers 4-1 in the NBA Finals from June 1-12 to clinch their fifth championship. Durant was named the Most Valuable Player (MVP) of the Finals. And the ink has barely dried on the mega contracts Durant and Curry have signed.
Curry, 29, who captivated the world with his stunning three-points – he hit a league-leading 316 triples – signed a jaw-dropping $201 million five-year deal. Durant’s deal is worth $53 million over two years.
It was the Warriors brilliant defence play and the dazzling offence of Durant and Curry that took apart rivals in 2016-17. And Durant, who joined the Warriors only last season, warned he was only warming up in his partnership with Curry, saying the duo ‘could be a dangerous’ pair.
“Me and Steph, our love for the game is similar. We appreciate each other’s skill set. Whatever steps he does is great and it is going to be even better this year as I am getting comfortable with him, so that I can do a better job with him,” Durant said.
“We are in a transition period; he is figuring me out as well. We can be really dangerous for a long time,” said Durant, who was also an NBA MVP in 2014 and won Olympic gold with US in 2012 and 2016.
Most would be on cloud nine, but ‘KD’ sees it differently.
“Paranoid! It just makes me a little more paranoid to be honest because everybody wants to take your spot. There are a lot of guys out there working their tails off, a lot of teams making their moves to beat us, as they should. This is just driving me more and more crazy,” Durant said at the NBA India event.
“But it is a good thing as it keeps me on the edge, which can be good for our team. You do not want anyone to take your spot.”
The former world champion is keen to leave his legacy.
“I want to win more championships. I am mentally prepared and focused from Day 1 and working on my game every day. I just want to stay consistent throughout the rest of my career. I am trying to get another championship next year -- that is the goal. It is hard not to look into the future but I just have to keep getting better,” added Durant.
“Basketball wise I just want to enjoy and see what happens in my career. You can never know what can happen in this game but in life I want to build a legacy, leave something to my family and make them proud.”
Guinness world record
Durant and 3,459 Indian children from the Reliance Foundation Jr. NBA programme set a new Guinness world record for the world’s largest basketball lesson (multiple venues) ever held.
Durant conducted the feat from NBA Academy India, which opened in May.