In his first game back in the Bay since leaving the Warriors following the 2019 season, Durant arrived at Chase Center on Saturday with little fanfare. He likely would have received quite the standing ovation from Dub Nation if fans were allowed in the building, but that comeback tour will have to wait.
Saturday’s low-key reception stands in stark contrast to the rude welcome he received once he returned to Oklahoma City as a member of the Warriors in 2017.
Thunder fans were still bitter when Durant and Dubs rolled into the arena that day, showering him with boos and labels of being a cupcake and probably a lot worse. A year earlier, he left Oklahoma City for Golden State after getting knocked out by the Warriors in the Western Conference Finals.
Even before Durant laced up his sneakers for the 2018-19 season, many figured it could have been his final season with the Dubs. His departure didn’t sting as much for Warriors fans, but it’s unfortunate Durant suffered an Achilles injury in his final act in a Golden State uniform in the 2019 NBA Finals.
Although he might not be remembered down the road as fondly as Steph Curry, Klay Thompson or Draymond Green, there’s no denying Durant’s important place in Warriors history. Three seasons, three NBA Finals appearances, two NBA titles, two NBA Finals MVPs. Not a bad run.
On Saturday, Durant looked spry despite missing the last week due to NBA COVID-19 protocols. He scored 20 points, dished six assists, grabbed five rebounds and helped dismantle the Warriors defense while leading Brooklyn to an easy win.
Dub Nation hopefully will get to give Durant the proper reception he deserves at Chase Center one day, before he’s immortalized with a statue in front of the arena.