'No. 35 – Oklahoma'
|'Born'||'September 29, 1988 (1988-09-29) (age 24)'
'Washington, D.C. '
|''''Listed height: ''''||'6 ft 9 in (2.06 m)'|
|''''Listed weight: ''''||'235 lbs (107 kg)'|
|'High school:'||'Montrose Christian School'
'(Maryland) Oak Hill Academy (Virginia)'
|'NBA Draft'||'2007 / Round: 1 / Pick: 2nd'|
|'Selected by the Seattle SuperSonics'|
'2007-present (6 years)'
Career highlights and awards
Kevin Wayne Durant (born September 29, 1988) is an American professional basketball player with the Oklahoma City Thunder of the National Basketball Association (NBA). Standing at 6 ft 9 in (2.06 m) and weighing in at 215 pounds (106.6 kg), he has played the small forward and power forward positions for the Thunder, formerly the Seattle SuperSonics. Durant has been a three-time NBA scoring champion, the NBA Rookie of the Year, and an Olympic gold medalist. He has also been selected to four All-NBA teams and four All-Star teams.
Durant was a heavily recruited high school prospect. He attended the University of Texas for one season of college basketball, where he won numerous awards and became the first ever freshman to be named Naismith College Player of the Year. In the 2007 NBA Draft, he was selected second overall by the Sonics. After his rookie season, the team moved to Oklahoma City and became the Thunder. Behind his play, the Thunder reached the 2012 NBA Finals, losing to the Miami Heat in five games. His career achievements have led led basketball analysts, experts, and writers to consider him one of the best players in the NBA today.
Off the court, Durant has accumulated considerable wealth as a result of numerous endorsement contracts. A well-liked player, he is a philanthropist who has donated money to various causes. In 2012, he starred in his first feature film, Thunderstruck
Early life and high school
Durant was born on September 29, 1988 in Washington, DC to Wanda and Wayne Pratt, who raised Durant with his grandmother, Barbara Davis. Durant has one sister, Brianna, and two brothers, Tony and Rayvonne. A basketball player from his earliest days, Durant played Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) basketball for several teams in the Maryland area, and was teammates with future NBA players Michael Beasley and Ty Lawson, the former of whom Durant remains friends with to this day. During this time, Durant began wearing the jersey number 35 in honor of his AAU coach Charles Craig, who was murdered at the age of 35.
After playing two years of high school basketball at National Christian Academy and one year at Oak Hill Academy, Durant transferred to Montrose Christian School for his senior year, growing five inches before the start of the season and beginning the year with a height of six feet, seven inches. Prior to the start of the season, he committed to The University of Texas. At the conclusion of the year, he was named the Washington Post All Met Basketball Player of the Year, as well as a McDonald's All American and MVP of the 2006 McDonald's All American Game. Behind Greg Oden, Durant was widely regarded as the second-best high school prospect of 2006.
Prior to the 2006-07 college season, Durant was widely considered the Big 12's top incoming freshman. For the year, he averaged 25.8 points, 11.1 rebounds, and 1.3 assists per game. Behind his play, the Longhorns finished the season with a 25-10 record overall, and a 12-4 record in-conference. Awarded a fourth seed in the NCAA Tournament, Texas won their first round match-up against New Mexico State but were upset in the second round by the University of Southern California.
Durant's performance for the year was praised by analysts, coaches, scouts, and writers, including Dick Vitale and Bob Knight. At the end of the season, Durant was named the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC) Division I Player of the Year, received the Oscar Robertson Trophy, and the Adolph F. Rupp Trophy. He was later named the Naismith College Player of the Year, becoming the first ever freshman to win the award. Finally, he received the John R. Wooden Award.
On April 11, Durant officially declared for the 2007 NBA Draft. Less than a week after being drafted, Texas announced the retirement of Durant's jersey.
Rookie season (2007–08) Durant was selected second overall in the 2007 NBA Draft by the Seattle SuperSonics. On October 31 of the following season, he made his professional debut with an 18 point, 5 rebound, and 3 steal performance. On November 16, he made the first game-winning shot of his career against the Atlanta Hawks. In the last game of the year, he recorded the first double-double of his career with 42 points and 13 rebounds, while also adding 5 assists. In addition to leading all rookies in scoring, he also won every Western Conference Rookie of the Month Award during the season except for February. At the conclusion of the year, Durant was named NBA Rookie of the Year with averages of 20.3 points, 4.4 rebounds, 2.4 assists, and 1 steal per game.
Breaking through (2008–2010)
Following Durant's debut season, the Sonics relocated from Seattle to Oklahoma City, becoming the Thunder and switching to new colors blue, orange, and yellow. The team also drafted UCLA guard Russell Westbrook, who would form an All-Star combination with Durant in later years. At the 2009 NBA All-Star Weekend, Durant set a Rookie Challenge record with 46 points. By the conclusion of the year, he had raised his scoring average by five points from the prior season to 25.3 points per game.
In the 2009–10 season, Durant was selected to his first All-Star Game. Behind his play, the Thunder improved their record by 27 wins from the previous year and defied expectations to make the playoffs. With a scoring average of 30.1 points per game, he became the youngest-ever NBA scoring champion and was selected to his first All-NBA team. He made his playoff debut against the Los Angeles Lakers on April 18, scoring 24 points in a Game 1 loss. Oklahoma would go on to lose the series in six games, but the team's performance led sports analysts to label them as an upcoming title contender. Contending for a title (2010–present) Prior to the start of the 2010–11 season, Durant announced via Twitter that he had signed a five year contract extension with the Thunder worth approximately $86 million. For the second consecutive year, Durant led the NBA in scoring, averaging 27.7 points a game. Behind Durant's leadership, the Thunder won 55 games and earned the fourth seed in the Western Conference. In the playoffs, Oklahoma defeated the Denver Nuggets and Memphis Grizzlies en route to a Conference Finals match-up versus the Dallas Mavericks, with the Thunder losing in five games.
On February 19 of the lockout-shortened 2011–12 season, Durant recorded his first career 50 point game, scoring 51 points against the Denver Nuggets. At the 2012 All-Star Game, he scored 36 points and was awarded his first All-Star Game MVP Award. He finished the year with a scoring average of 28 points per game, representing his third straight scoring title. Behind his play, the Thunder won 47 games and entered the playoffs as the Western Conference's second seed. In Game 1 of the first round against the Dallas Mavericks, Durant hit a game-winner with 1.5 seconds remaining. Oklahoma would go on to defeat the Mavericks, and then the Lakers and San Antonio Spurs, before losing to the Miami Heat in the 2012 NBA Finals. In the Finals, Durant led all players with 30.6 points per game, doing so with a 54.8 shooting rate.
Prior to the start of the 2012–13 season, the Thunder traded the defending Sixth Man of the Year James Harden to the Houston Rockets, a move that sports analysts believed hurt Oklahoma's title chances. On January 18, Durant scored a career-high 52 points in an overtime victory against the Mavericks. With a final scoring average of 28.1 points per game, he failed to defend his scoring title; however, with a 51 percent shooting rate, a 41.6 percent three point shooting rate, and a 90.5 free throw shooting rate, Durant became the youngest player in NBA history to join the 50–40–90 Club. Finishing the year with a 60-22 record, Oklahoma earned the first seed in the Western Conference. In the first round of the playoffs against the Rockets, Russell Westbrook injured his knee, forcing him to miss the remainder of the postseason. Without Westbrook, Durant was given more responsibility, averaging a career-high 30.8 points per game throughout the playoffs, but Oklahoma were eventually eliminated in the second round by the Grizzlies.
In late February 2007, Durant received an invitation to the Team USA Basketball training camp, becoming the second college freshman (the first being Greg Oden) to do so. After playing in only a handful of games in the 2007 NBA Summer League, Durant was chosen to play for Team USA and participate in the State Farm USA basketball challenge, alongside NBA All-Stars such as Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Chris Bosh, and Dwight Howard. Despite a strong performance, Durant was ultimately cut from Team USA when the roster was trimmed to its twelve-player limit. Coach Mike Krzyzewski cited the experience of the remaining players as the deciding factor in making the cut.
Durant was eventually selected to Team USA at 2010 FIBA World Championship and became the leader of the team as other All-Stars were unavailable, a role he downplayed. He would lead Team USA to its first FIBA World Championship since 1994, earning tournament MVP honors in the process. Along the way, Durant broke several Team USA scoring records including most points in a tournament (205) and most points in a single game (38). He averaged 22.8 points, 6.1 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.4 steals in nine games.
At the 2012 Olympics in London, England, Durant set a record for most total points scored in an Olympic basketball tournament, previously held by Spencer Haywood. The team finished undefeated, winning the gold medal match over runner-up Spain.