Kevin Durant on career in Oklahoma City: ‘It’s been great so far’
Kevin Durant’s future beyond the conclusion of the 2015-16 NBA season has been the source of speculation going on years now. But the Thunder superstar, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, showed some love for Oklahoma City by insisting playing in the smaller market hasn’t had an adverse impact upon his marketability.
“It’s been great so far. I love the city,” Durant said during an interview with Blomberg, as transcribed by The Oklahoman’s Erik Horne, via Pro Basketball Talk. “As far as being marketable, with social media and how things are going nowadays, you can be marketable anywhere. I’ve gotten everything that I’ve wanted to get while being in Oklahoma City; that’s never the problem. I just enjoy playing the game of basketball.
With teams like the New York Knicks, Boston Celtics and Washington Wizards among the larger-market teams hoping to lure Durant away from Oklahoma City, the superstar was asked if the notion of playing in a larger city — one that may provide more marketing opportunities — appeals to him.
“It’s easy to think like that when you hear it a lot, but like I said it comes back to loving the game for what I started it for as a kid, which was just to have fun,” he said. “I’m blessed enough that if I work hard enough I can make the money that I want to make, but I’ve made so much in my career already that I can take care of my family, and it’s all about having fun playing with great people and being around great people every single day. That’s more important to me.”
Sitting at 46-22, the Thunder are among the top teams in the Western Conference, although arguably a notch below the Golden State Warriors and San Antonio Spurs. Given what Durant has said, the team where he will have the greatest chance to win an NBA title probably will serve as the most important criteria when the time arrives for Durant to make his decision. And that doesn’t preclude staying in Oklahoma City.
Other smaller-market teams of course will be in the hunt for Durant’s services — the Spurs and Warriors reportedly among them, as will several other NBA cities big and small — and even though the star has grown weary of discussing his future and how OKC plays into it, the questions about it will continue to come his way.