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Monday, February 17, 2020

Articles tagged: Oklahoma City Thunder fans

Kevin Durant rips Thunder and their fans: ‘I’ll never be attached to that city again’

Kevin Durant

Kevin Durant spent the first eight years of his career with the Thunder and once believed Oklahoma City would always feel like home to him, but that changed in a hurry for the two-time NBA Finals MVP after the way he was treated when he signed with the Golden State Warriors.

In an interview with J.R. Moehringer of the Wall Street Journal that was published this week, Durant unloaded on the Thunder organization and fans in OKC for everything that has unfolded since he left. He said his perception of the fans changed when they went berserk over his decision to leave in free agency three years ago.

“People coming to my house and spray-painting on the for sale signs around my neighborhood,” Durant recalled. “People making videos in front of my house and burning my jerseys and calling me all types of crazy names.”

It wasn’t just the fans. Durant says the Thunder have also acted “fake” to him, and he has not maintained a positive relationship with anyone in the team’s front office since his departure.

“I’ll never be attached to that city again because of that,” Durant said. “I eventually wanted to come back to that city and be part of that community and organization, but I don’t trust nobody there. That s— must have been fake, what they was doing. The organization, the GM, I ain’t talked to none of those people, even had a nice exchange with those people, since I left.”

Fans reacted similarly when LeBron James left Cleveland the first time, but he still chose to return to the Cavaliers and deliver on his promise of bringing the franchise its first NBA title. Durant has no interest in doing the same in OKC.

In addition to the vandalism and jersey burning, Durant’s mother Wanda has also spoken about the nasty treatment she has dealt with from Thunder fans. KD is extremely close with his mom, so that is likely a factor as well.

Durant has a tendency to hold grudges and can be very thin-skinned, so it’s no surprise he wants nothing to do with Oklahoma City. Fans can be irrational, but Durant isn’t the type of guy to overlook being disrespected.

Thunder fans dig up Terrance Ferguson’s pro-Warriors tweets

The Oklahoma City Thunder used their first-round pick on a pro-Kevin Durant Golden State Warriors fan.

The Thunder made Terrance Ferguson, a 19-year-old swingman who opted to pass on college and play professionally in Australia for a year, the No. 21 overall pick. It seemed like a solid choice for Oklahoma City — a young, quick wing player with a quality shot.

That is until, in what is becoming a draft night tradition, some of Ferguson’s old tweets surfaced.

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NBA reportedly investigating incident involving Patrick Beverley, Thunder fan

Patrick Beverley Rockets

The NBA is reportedly investigating an incident that took place between Houston Rockets guard Patrick Beverley and an Oklahoma City Thunder fan Friday night.

Multiple sources told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne that the league is reviewing footage from television broadcasts and the arena itself to figure out what happened. Beverley will also be interviewed by the NBA.

Little is known about the alleged incident, but a Chesapeake Energy Arena spokesperson said there had been an incident immediately following the game. A few images emerged, but offered little in the way of conclusive evidence regarding what took place.

Beverley does occasionally get involved in things like this, albeit not with fans. The league has zero tolerance for player-fan conflicts, so if anything did happen, Beverley will likely be disciplined for it.

Wanda Durant hurt by ‘vicious’ treatment from Oklahoma City fans

Kevin Durant sellout poster

Kevin Durant’s mother thinks Oklahoma City fans crossed the line with their behavior on Saturday night.

Wanda Durant told ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne that she was hurt by some of what she heard from Thunder fans during Golden State’s 130-114 win on Saturday night.

“The most vicious things you could say, they said about my son tonight. It’s hurtful,” Durant said. “We poured our heart into this place. Not just him. Our family. This is basketball. This is not whether or not you’re going to make it into heaven.

“They called him a snake, a sellout, a b—-,” she added. “It’s just a sad day. I understand that they loved him. I do understand it. But the name-calling. The people with the cupcakes on their backs. … It didn’t have to be like this.”

Wanda Durant added that she has been looked at differently in her trips back to Oklahoma City.

“This is not the first time I’ve been back since Kevin left,” she said. “This is maybe my fourth or fifth time. Every time that I’ve been back, people seem like they are afraid to say something nice to me. People will whisper, ‘There’s his mom. Ooooooh!’

“There are people who tell me they still love him. But then you have the people who shot his jersey up. My son poured his heart and soul into this place for eight years, and for them to treat him like this because he decided to go someplace else to play is really tough.”

Most of what was seen on broadcasts of the game was fairly innocuous, but perhaps Durant heard things in the arena that the television audience was not privy to. Whatever the case, it seems to have deeply upset her.

Draymond Green explains heated exchange with Thunder fan Rich Taylor

Draymond Green

Kevin Durant made his long-awaited return to Oklahoma City on Saturday night, but he wasn’t the only Golden State Warriors player who was taunted by Thunder fans. Just ask Draymond Green.

Thunder superfan Rich Taylor, aka “Big Rich,” was seated behind Golden State’s bench during the Thunder’s 130-114 loss. At one point, he got into it with Draymond Green and police stepped in. Taylor was also spoken to by Durant and Warriors coach Steve Kerr.

When asked about the exchange, Green said he doesn’t mind fans heckling but indicated Taylor was being racist.

Taylor, a local bar owner who was wearing a shirt that said “KOWARD” with the “K” and “D” highlighted, admitted he was hurling insults toward Durant and his teammates but insists he kept it PG.

We all knew Durant’s return to Oklahoma City for the first time as a visiting player would not be drama-free, and Durant himself hinted that he expected more. From the way it seems, Durant kept his composure better than Green. That’s not exactly shocking.

Kevin Durant trolled by Thunder fans with these posters and shirts

Kevin Durant sellout poster

Oklahoma City Thunder fans booed Kevin Durant as expected upon his return to face his former team on Saturday at Chesapeake Energy Arena. They also brought plenty of posters and shirts to troll their former MVP.

Most of the posters and shirts had a similar theme of ripping Durant for leaving the Thunder franchise to join the rival Golden State Warriors, who knocked them out of the Western Conference playoffs last season.

Here’s a roundup of the best posters:

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Thunder fan petitions to change name of Durant, Oklahoma to Westbrook

Kevin-Durant

The negative feelings toward Kevin Durant run deep in certain parts of Oklahoma.

How deep? Well, did you know there is a town called Durant in Oklahoma? And did you know that a resident of the state is now petitioning to change the name of that town?

Edmond, Oklahoma resident Ryan Nazari started a petition asking the Governor of Oklahoma to change the name of Durant to Westbrook to celebrate the newly-committed guard.

“As many of you know, Kevin Durant has left our state, torn out our hearts, and left our beloved Oklahoma City Thunder in depleted shape,” the petition reads. “All of this after even being offered a cabinet position for the State of Oklahoma. It is because of this heinous action that I believe the State of Oklahoma has a responsibility to change the name of the City of Durant to Westbrook, the man who is loyal, whom we believe in, and who will lead our team to glory.”

Will it happen? Probably not. Is it fun? Yes, it is, and much like this, probably a more constructive thing to do than burning jerseys.

H/T theScore