Kevin Durant’s ten game run of dominance has been replete with such brilliance it’s becoming almost unimaginable to encapsulate it in basketball parlance alone.
One has to wonder if teammate Russell Westbrook is familiar with the tale of Wally Pipp. Yes, ‘The Slim Reaper’s’ torturous run has been so deadly there are even those now openly questioning if one of the league’s most explosive talents might soon be best relegated to the status of mere footnote in Oklahoma City’s ultimate quest for league supremacy.
While I personally haven’t grown quite that delirious, we all can agree watching ‘Duruntula’ toy with opposing defenses to the point of netting at least 30 points in nine straight games and at least 46 or more in four of them has been downright intoxicating.
So otherworldly has Durant been over the last two weeks even four-time NBA MVP and back-to-back league champ LeBron James is craving what he’s dishing
“When the basket is an ocean, you can’t really do much about it,” lamented Portland guard Wesley Matthews after Durant led his Thunder past the Blazers on Monday. Added teammate Mo Williams “the way he was playing, he probably could have scored on Jesus.”
Or, at the very least, the King.
“I ain’t beyond that,” James told ESPN of marveling at Durant. “I ain’t beyond that at all. I love when I see K.D. do something like that. It gives me an incentive. I don’t get that many shots around here, but I might be able to do a little something. I might be able to get a couple of dunks.”
At 31 points a night, Durant leads James by nearly five points as the league’s top scorer but where he stands in terms of raised assertiveness is downright off the charts. Over the years, some have questioned if Durant has handled sharing the limelight with Westbrook as well as a man of his pedigree and ability should.
Let the record heretofore show that if the Thunder are ever to reach their hoop dreams of raising an NBA banner in Oklahoma that can no longer be an issue. How can it when Durant has grown to be so efficient he’s even rendered James a joke among his own family.
“I do a lot of checking and seeing what guys have done overnight,” James said of his all NBA, all-the-time obsession. “After every game, I always go … and see what guys did. I didn’t have to look too far to see what K.D. did last night. As soon as I looked at my phone, a family member of mine said, ‘K.D. had 54, you only had 21. You stink.’ So, there it is.”
Over the years, Durant has made no secret of his growing weariness with always seeming to end up as just another bystander in James’ run for immortality. Twice he’s finished runner-up to him for MVP and in 2012 James claimed his first NBA chip at his offseason workout buddy’s expense.
But now, even The King senses the times could be a changing.
“Once a scorer like that gets going, you ain’t going to stop him,” said James. “I saw like the last 20 points he had, and they were all contested jumpers. He was hitting … barely touching the net. When you’re in a zone like that, it doesn’t matter as a defender. There’s nothing you can do about it.”