Wooing? Not so much. Kevin Durant hears boos in Washington.
Are they saying “boo” or “Duuurant”?
Thanks to Howard Beck of Bleacher Report for that line. He and ESPN’s Royce Young pass along the news that I and others have heard on NBA TVs broadcast of the game:
Kevin Durant is getting booed in his hometown of Washington D.C.
They aren't overly loud, but Durant is definitely getting booed some while handling the ball.— Royce Young (@royceyoung) November 11, 2015
So much for Wizards fans wooing Durant. They're booing whenever he touches the ball.— Howard Beck (@HowardBeck) November 11, 2015
To be fair, it wasn’t loud and was a minority of fans on hand at the Verizon Center. Still it is a surprise.
Durant is a free agent this summer, and the Wizards have cleared out cap space to make a max offer to him in an attempt to lure him home. Durant said he was put off by the recruitment efforts by Washington fans and in the arena last year — they even put an image of him on the jumbotron in a Wizards jersey — and the Washington players were none to happy about it either.
Maybe this was a reaction to him not wanting to be cheered. Maybe this was some fans in Washington figuring out Durant is more likely to stay in OKC than he is to come home next summer (not every player wants to play in his hometown). Maybe this was just passionate Wizards fans rooting for their team against the big bad Thunder.
Whatever the case, this will have zero impact on Durant’s decision this summer when he becomes a free agent. He knows the fans will sing his praises wherever he chooses to land.