A time that seems distant now, Kevin Durant and Russell Westbrook were once teammates at the Oklahoma City Thunder and together, they reached the NBA Finals in 2012, only to lose to the Miami Heat of the Big Three.
Many things have changed since then, with the two players going their separate ways, primarily due to Durant’s decision to join the Golden State Warriors in 2016.
Now KD and Russ will face each other as opponents in the first-round Playoff series that pits the Phoenix Suns against the Los Angeles Clippers, but according to Westbrook’s comments to the media, there is no resentment for how things went down at OKC:
It’s going to be normal for me. I think people still think there’s some sort of resentment or something. There’s no resentment. I have nothing but respect for him and the things he’s done in his career. Happy to see him come back from injuryRussell Westbrook
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The Clippers’ point guard then explained how Kevin Durant has been able to evolve his game since his days in OKC:
He’s always been very efficient, but his ability to be even more efficient and score at a high rate. Probably one of the best scorers I’ve ever seen, he’s able to score at a great frequencyRussell Westbrook
In the years following Durant’s departure from the Thunder, Westbrook has always seemed to play with particular competitive edge in games against Durant, but apparently, time has healed past misunderstandings and resentments.
We’ll see if Russ follows through on his conciliatory words in the press conference on the court, starting from Game 1 scheduled for the night between Sunday and Monday at 2:00 Italian time.