This is a Slice of Culture series where we’re breaking down the top NBA players of today and analyzing how their careers have gone up until now.
Kevin Durant is one of the most polarizing players in the NBA.
Averaging 29.7 points, 7.7 rebounds, and 5.7 assists per game, he has a solid shot at winning MVP. The Brooklyn Nets star is currently leading his team to the second seed in the Eastern conference, after also finishing as a second seed last season.
Durant has had a winding road to the top of the league, amassing many accolades along the way.
He is a two-time NBA Champion/Finals MVP, one-time MVP, eleven-time All-Star, four-time Scoring Champion, and has made nine All-NBA teams.
He is a guaranteed Hall of Famer and will be known as one of the greatest scorers and players of all time.
Drafted to the Seattle SuperSonics, now known as the Oklahoma City Thunder, in 2007, Durant took the league by storm.
Durant spent nine seasons with the Oklahoma City Thunder, winning an MVP and making a finals appearance.
In 2016, he made the shocking decision to join the Golden State Warriors, the runner-up for the NBA Championship. This paired him with star players Stephen Curry, Klay Thompson, and Draymond Green.
They proceeded to make the finals for the next three seasons, winning the first two. However, Durant suffered an achilles injury during the 2019 playoff run, ending his season early. This caused the Warriors to lose in the NBA Finals against the Toronto Raptors.
Durant left the Warriors after three seasons, teaming up with Kyrie Irving on the Brooklyn Nets.
His achilles injury sidelined him for the entirety of the 2019-2020 season.
Achilles injuries are notorious for derailing NBA careers. Durant was an exception, coming back in 2020 and averaging almost 27 points per game, which was higher than all of his seasons at Golden State. He also did this on the highest efficiency of his career while averaging his least amount of minutes per game.
Unfortunately, due to injuries on his teammates, James Harden and Kyrie Irving, the Brooklyn Nets were upset in the second round of the 2021 playoffs, losing to the eventual champions, the Milwaukee Bucks.
Durant averaged over 34 points per game during the playoff run, but the Nets were defeated in seven games, narrowly losing the final game.
Just like last season, the Nets are the favorites to win the NBA Championship. If they stay healthy, they will likely do it. Durant looks to add a third title and Finals MVP to his illustrious resume.
Let’s see if he can do it.