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Kevin Durant on his place in history: ‘Comparison is a need for joy’

Golden State Warriors v Indiana Pacers

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA - JANUARY 28: Kevin Durant #35 of the Golden State Warriors watches the action against the Indiana Pacers at Bankers Life Fieldhouse on January 28, 2019 in Indianapolis, Indiana. (Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images)

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Golden State Warriors star Kevin Durant has known to be a sensitive guy. He has had a burner account in the past on Twitter, and the narrative surrounding him is one of the desire for respect equal of his ability and accomplishments.

But that always seems to escape the former NBA Finals MVP, and so rumor has it Durant could depart the Warriors this summer for another clear starring role on his own team.

Still, Durant says that he tries not to compare himself to the greats of NBA history. Instead, Durant wants to compare his performance to that of his teammates as a way to make himself better.

I’m not sure I necessarily believe Durant actually does this, but it’s probably a healthier way to look at his day-to-day experience.

Via The Athletic:

“Comparison is a need for joy,” Durant said. “It takes a long time for you to realize that as an NBA player, especially when you’ve been pumped up, as soon as you come into it, you’re promoted a star. You always want to compare yourself to the next guy or the guy that did it before, the MJs, the Kobes, the LeBrons, to rookies. I want to compare myself to my teammates. When you compare yourself at all times to see what guys are doing, you’re taking away from the focus of trying to make yourself the greatest that you can be.”

“Comparison is a need for joy” sounds like a quote directly from a therapy session, and if that’s the case, good for Durant.

On a human level you can feel empathy for Durant struggling with his place in history and not feeling validated despite his obvious greatness. Hopefully Durant can use this mindset to help him the playoffs this season and as he moves forward with whatever decision he makes for his career.