Programming note: Watch the pregame edition of Warriors Outsiders on Saturday at 3:30 p.m., streaming live on the MyTeams app.
When Kevin Durant played for the Thunder, he practically was universally revered by everybody in the basketball world.
That changed when he elected to join the Warriors in July 2016.
“I came here knowing for a fact that every media member, every fan was going to call me every name in the book for however long I was here and I was going to take the brunt of everything," Durant recently told Michael Lee of The Athletic. "But I wanted to be a part of this so bad, I didn’t give a f--k."
Durant is the reigning two-time NBA Finals MVP, yet he's had to deal with people saying his championships aren't valid. Those people also have said there will be an asterisk by his name when discussing the best players of all time, that he is responsible for ruining the NBA and much more.
Many people believe he took the easy route by signing with Golden State, but that's not how he views things.
"I sacrificed a lot of s--t to be here and to change my game up to be with these guys," Durant told The Athletic. "And it was worth it.”
KD is absolutely right about that. He chose a path that has led to a lot of vitriol thrown his way. That isn't easy to handle.
He sacrificed personal statistics and accolades (regular season, that is) to try something new and different.
“I watched James (Harden) and I see what he’s doing and I admire what he’s doing and I appreciate what he’s doing,” Durant explained. “Before, I would’ve been, ‘F--k, I wish that was me.’
"But now, I can appreciate the game even more because I’m so secure with my game. I don’t have to go out there and shoot every time for people to recognize me.
"I’m cool with it, you know what I’m saying?”
This summer, will Durant make a choice that affords him the ability to average 30 plus points per game, like Harden? Nobody knows the answer, and it truly doesn't matter right now.
Just enjoy watching him against the Clippers in the playoffs.