The debut of Kevin Durant with the Golden State Warriors against the Toronto Raptors in Vancouver last Saturday did not go smoothly. The Warriors lost, 97-93 to the Raptors. Apparently, every time Durant will touch the ball, there was a combination of both cheers and boos.
In a locker room interview with Sports Net before the NBA’s preseason started, Durant spoke about his expectations. “I’m sure we’re going to be a hot ticket coming into town,” he said. He was right but not on the negative take coming from the audience during the game. Durant spoke only about how he sees everybody wanting to see them play and not noticing the negative feedback after.
Nonetheless, the Warriors’ new small forward had 9 points in his 19 minutes of play. It was part of Warriors coach Steve Kerr’s game plan, that his starters would be limited to 20 minutes of playing time. Kerr stuck to his plan but Durant made it exceptional by making the most of his playing time.
The Warriors were prepared for the reaction of the crowd during the pregame introductions. But in an interview with Scott Howard-Cooper of NBA, Steph Curry shared his thoughts:
“I highly doubt anybody in this arena was affected by (Durant’s free-agent decision),” he said. “It’s just funny kind of buying into a narrative that doesn’t really make sense. It probably won’t be the last time. But he handles it well and at the end of the day it’s just about playing basketball,” he added.
After the game, Durant came in front of the cameras and microphones smiling, “I heard more cheers than boos, to be honest,” he said. Durant was more focused on getting ready for the game and his performance. He didn’t even notice the booing,, instead he heard cheers.
Kevin Durant called the game a good first step with his new team. However, he honestly said the feeling was a little different being with the Warriors this NBA season, especially wearing a different team’s jersey.
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