Kevin Durant opens up about friendship with Russell Westbrook
Kevin Durant was inducted into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame on Thursday night. And to no surprise, his Thunder teammate and close friend, Russell Westbrook presented him.
Ahead of his induction, Durant sat down earlier this week with newsOK.com’s Anthony Slater for a lengthy interview in which he discussed at-length his friendship with Westbrook.
Slater notes that Durant has been hesitant to conduct one-on-one interviews this season, mostly due to endless questions about his injury woes of late along with unending inquires about his NBA future after he becomes a free agent after this season. But he made an exception solely to talk about his pal Westbrook.
Durant spoke about when the two first met on draft night in 2008 — “Immediately we just clicked,” he said — and how it was hard to gain Westbrook’s trust early on but eventually the two relied upon the other, something that continues to this day.
“I think when you meet anybody, it’s hard to gain their trust,” Durant said. “It took us both some time to get used to each other. Because the NBA life was very new to me, I was in it for a year and we relocated. For him, it was new … We were kids, man. We were kids. There was so much going on. But we kinda leaned on each other.”
Durant also discussed how it’s not always cordial between the two, but that’s how it goes with “family.”
“There’s times where we go at it,” he said. “… There’s times we cuss each other out, but that’s a part of being brothers. Because I know if I need something, he’ll be there and if I need to talk to someone outside of basketball, he’ll be there. It’s a real brotherhood type relationship. We’re like family.”
There’s no doubt that Durant and Westbrook have become remarkably close over the years. Whether or not that friendship proves to be a significant component in whether or not Durant remains in Oklahoma City or begins a new chapter in his NBA career won’t be known until next summer.