Durant to join cast of “Mad Men?”

OKLAHOMA CITY – iPad? Check. Bible? Check. Headphones? Check. Phone charger? Check.

Now it looks like Kevin Durant is preparing to pack something else into his backpack for tonight’s Western Conference finals Game 4 against the Mavs — an attitude.

Berry Tramel of the Oklahoman sums up what a lot of visitors to the Thunder practice on Sunday notice: The usually-serene Durant seemed to be boiling beneath the surface.

Durant was somber. Gloomy. Angry, almost. Check that. Angry, definitely.

Mad at the media? Mad at himself? Mad at DeShawn Stevenson’s defense, which is trying to go all Shane Battier and Tony Allen on the NBA scoring champion?

Head cold? Girl problems? Cable out at the new house in Gaillardia?

Whatever it is, Durant offered no clues.

“We just don’t want to lose,” Durant said. “Just ready to play, man.”

What’s sticking in Durant’s craw, of course, is the 7-for-22 clunker of a shooting performance he left out on the floor of the Oklahoma City Arena in Game 3 when his Thunder promptly gave right back the home court advantage they’d stolen away from Dallas in Game 2.

It was a game that began horribly for Durant with three straight misses, including an airball on a 3-pointer, and ended with him conspicuously missing from the offense when the Thunder were making a late fourth-quarter rally.

We have seen the Thunder bounce back from adversity many times before. They are 26-6 this season in games following a loss and they have not dropped back-to-back games so far in the playoffs.

We have seen Durant himself recover spectacularly in the conference semifinals against Memphis. After he was held to 3-for-14 shooting and 11 points in Game 6, Durant pumped in 39 points and grabbed nine rebounds to lead OKC in Game 7.

Against the Grizzlies, Durant merely nodded his head and promised to be ready for the seventh game. He said he’d be prepared, focused and intense from the opening tip.

But angry?

This is definitely a different side of Durant than he has shown in his four NBA seasons and, we’ve got to admit, it’s a bit jarring. It’s like bending down to pet your cuddly puppy and winding up with a snarling Cujo in your lap. Has he concluded that nice guys can’t finish first? Is it wise to suddenly try to change the essence of your personality?

The angry and disrespected act has certainly worked for many athletes in the past. Just look over to the Eastern Conference side of the bracket where LeBron James, Dwyane Wade and Chris Bosh are constantly fueling their tanks with real or imagined criticism. It’s gotten them a 2-1 lead on the Bulls. So maybe it can work for Durant, too, with a little extra bite in his game. But here at Hang Time Headquarters, we’re already missing the smile.

52 Comments

  1. Cha says:

    I just saw the game 4 and I have to tell you guys. They need to make the offense revolve around KD more not just give it to him in certain times but for most part. They lost Harden, and ever since then they couldn’t score.

  2. eric park says:

    we need OKC fans like you guys here in L.A.

  3. Mark says:

    hoping for DAL to take home the championship. hope the vets can beat MIA in the finals. Maybe next year for MIA and the future for CHI and OKC

  4. Joex_dvo.city philippines says:

    I dont think OKC got a chance in this match-up Dallas was too much for them! goodluck OKC..

  5. SLS says:

    People still blaming Westbrook. How can you blame WB when KD missed his shots. If they double teamed Durant & Harden then the only scorer left was WB. WB got them back in the game during Game 3. Towards the end of the game they settled for jumpspots instead of going to the hole. WB was best in the paint, so he needs to focus on that more. Durant gotta learn to break out of the double teams to make plays. I saw Dirk do that many times.

  6. Agree with HEATS says:

    I completely agree with HEATS on the fact that there are several NBA teams that have more
    one star. Look at the Knicks – they’ve got Amare, Carmello, and Chauncey(MVP finals 2004 and 5 time NBA All Star).
    The Knicks proved this season just because you have super stars on your time, does not mean you will be that great. So what Miami is doing just fine. So please stop hating!

    GO HEAT!

  7. Airwind says:

    There is nothing wrong being angry for as long as you don’t commit sin. Come on! Leave that young superstar alone. He is learning. He is in the process of becoming a champ! Kudos Kevin Durant (though I cheer for the Mavs). Peace!

  8. The Young 1 says:

    @ Bobby : If Perkins is benched yes it will open the driving floor for Durant, but it alsoi takes away a part of their post-game and their D. And Durant is usually the only one you see really driving to the rim, WB is more of a mid to long range shooter and Harden can drive some-what but chooses not to so it would mostly open up for Durant alone

  9. Shawn says:

    I’m sorry Fran but this is just one of the worst character pieces I have ever read. We really need to stop colorizing athletes and it needs to start with the uninspired sports writing.

  10. Bryan G says:

    He doesn’t need to be angry or have an attitude during the game for 2 reasons.

    1) Being angry won’t help him play well I’m sorry it might help him play aggresivley, but thts more of a chance to early fouls. So no he doesn’t need an attitude

    2) Without a cool-head that will cause a bigger chance of him earening a tech. (Most players with attitudes talk back to the refs and a lot of unnecessary mouthing)

    P.S) He needs to stay fired up but go in there with a cool head

  11. Chrisco says:

    it’s funny to hear about how OKC battled back……they continued to shoot horribly and had no answer to the Mavs defense, they just had the refs bailing them out in the second half. Mavs played 8 on 5 and still won.

  12. OKC, OKC, OKC, OKC SUCKS! says:

    MAV’S WILL WIN, end of STORY!

  13. Bobby says:

    If Perkins is benched, the floor opens up for Durant, WB, and Harden to drive to the hoop. Otherwise, it’s jumpshots and hope.

  14. G says:

    Agreed with what HEATS said. and on Durant “making a lebron move” on the thunder haa, thats one of the funniest things i’ve ever read on here. he just signed a 5 year deal and in one of those years he will get a ring. think bfor u speak man

  15. JJ says:

    Sorry who won the SUPERBOWL?Did dallas win?

  16. JJ says:

    Who wow the NBA FINALS?

  17. shayl patel says:

    ok so noboday has any rights to be criticizing westbrook until they play in the nba, or become all nba 2nd team, or becomes an allstar. the guy has a great future in the nba he is still learning and transitioning from sg to pg (he played sg in college). It takes time. honestly nobody expected the thunder (besides okc fans) to get this far in the playoffs even after the way the performed last year. instead of criticizing them look at all of the accomplishments they have mad in the past year.

  18. HEATS says:

    All you guys that talking about traitors clearly are oblivious to the teams in the NBA. Most teams playing now have more than one star, and in a lot of cases more than one superstar. Who remembered when Gasol was the go too guy at memphis and artest at pacers. The lakers have Lamar Odom coming from the bench…. he is a certified starter. You all refer to Garnett being a fighter and staying in Minnesota for so long, try remembering this game is a very physical one, an injury can sideline you for the rest of your career. So talking about fighting and waiting is utter crap. lebron and bosh gave their teams many years to create a team around him and they failed. To stay on a team that has no heart nor no fight is contradicting the true competitor that they are. True competitors win!!!! When Miami wins this Playoff season, all will agree that it was no walk over.

    So stop hatin’ HATERS

  19. seewhatyouwanttosee says:

    quite frankly i don’t get it…Look at the facts, you have one guy (westbrook SHOT 8 FOR 20 AND YOU GUYS ARE SAYING HE IS STEERING THE TEAM IN THE WRONG DIRECTION AND DURANT SHOT 7/22 WOW ) that is taking all the blame for the other (durant). durant impact on a game is not bigger than westbrook’s if that was the case then they would have won game 1 (durant scored 40). durant shooting is streaky compared to the elites and they would not be this far had it not be for the refs and westbrook. I am saying this now I TOLD YOU SO it is JUMPSHOTS. the ref’s weakness is the jumpshot. durant shot his team out that game in the first quarter and when westbrook came in they rallied back. I know what your next argument will be “what about the game westbrook sat out they won that one”. YES THEY DID not off the efforts of Durant but the efforts of the bench ( harden and maynor) and with the boost from the third by westbrook’s leadership. Everybody wants a guinea pig to target for the lost other than the face of the franchise, but i say to you this Jordan did not become the player that he was with out pippen and the pistons that kept man handling him (pressure). You refs need to allow these players to reach deep down in themselves and call the game fair is it because you all are in fear of the league’s appearance to the outerworld that it will bee categorize as a place “all for one and one for all free type fall- where the chips may” kinda picture. There is too much organize confusion and now OKC faces a JUMPSHOOTING TEAM GOOD LUCK WITH THE FACE OF THE FRANCHISE. It was suppose to be Memphis time to shine you guys could not let that happen an 8 seed the chips, i guess, are falling in dallas now

    • Nada says:

      It doesn’t matter if you’re shooting 90% and down the last few minutes you loose control. Look at Dirk, He shooting 3 out of 14 but he took control the fourth quater resulting in a Dallas win. I haven’t seen one game where WB make good effort the last few minutes. WB is a good player but not a wise player, another word is low basketball IQ!!!

  20. lets go mavs says:

    yes the thunder are a great team but i dont think its westbrooks fault for their losses. yeah he might take way too many shots sometimes. But sometimes you feel like not giving up the ball to a playler that has been shooting bad all game long. MAVS in 5

  21. DURANT READ THIS says:

    KD Snap OUT of your shooting slump. OKC needs you. Westbrook PLAY YOUR game thats how we got this far if u know it or not. IBAKA play DEFENSE we need your shot blocking. COOK Your in the game to knockdown 3’s you were the 3-Point-champion at one time Shoot LIKE IT. THABO Your a great defender help us out. PERKINS REBOUND the BALL!! Grab 15 in this one tonight. JAMES HARDEN what happened man? you were playing like a bat out of heck and that last game you played like….quite frankly like me. Pick UP the PACE we need your scoring. SCOTTY BROOKS your a great coach get these guys motivated so we can bring home that TROPHY If anyone can, YOU CAN. Coach of the year. Good Luck I’ll be watchin.

  22. ko8e says:

    its good that durant is gettin pissed cuz thats something that brandon roy said he didnt have in him and something players like kobe…jordan..had which is the killer instinct and its good hes esptablishing it now…he needs to kick you when your down and go for the throat.. hell be focused but now the fire is lite and theres gunna be no stopping it

  23. Joseph Whitefield says:

    okc got this, no doubt, jus that the thunder gotta get focused like they did in the first round against denver, need more help in the paint, cant rely on the backcourt, pound it inside

  24. I'll ALWAYS be a Nuggets fan! says:

    Mav’s WILL win, no doubt. Anger dosn’t solve a THING DURANT!

    • The Young 1 says:

      Totally agree with u except about the Mavericks winning! Anger doesn’t solve anything

  25. YOUCRAZY says:

    oklahoma city is going to lose. dey got lucky theyr dis far. russel westbrook is such a ball hog and durant still makes 30 points

  26. Awe says:

    Let somebody tell Durant that anger doesn’t win a game or the series. He should just go outhere and play his game. The best team will carry the day regardless of individual approach. However, i strongly believe that the MAVS will win this series while i encourage the OKC to wait for their time.

  27. Michael says:

    Just give up the game go!!! Just face it OKC can’t beat Dallas

  28. THEMAN says:

    Durant is mad… Mad about not getting more calls from the one-sided zebras. HAHA kiddin

  29. Goldenstaes says:

    @KDthunderup KD stay focus! wat’s da focus? to win at all cost!

  30. OKC fan says:

    Stick to playing Maynor and Bench Westbrook.T

    This will work pretty well for OKC.

    I like the decision making of Maynor than the Selfish WB.

    • Ex-Sonic says:

      Last year when I saw WB play, he was all right but I guess greedy has taken him out of control. Honestly I don’t know how did he earn t be an All Star last year. WB is a friend of Drose so maybe he’s trying to be like Drose but it might cost OKC the opportunity to be in the Final, maybe forever..Nobody knows!!!One thing WB should know is that his value is not as hot as he think. We heard a lot of comments from sport commemtators. Whether is WB or coach decision, I think it’s time for evaluation.

      • QuestionMark says:

        As long as WB is able to score inside, I don’t mind him scoring, but last game, WB and Cook taking the 3 instead of Durant, what the hell that about??? Durant has to actually talk to WB and tell him to give me the ball during clutch time. Durant struggled last game, he has to go for 40 tonight. WB has to play like he did in Game 7 against Memphis, 14 pts, 10 rebs and 14 asts, 14 asts that stands out, and that is what WB has to do.

      • bob says:

        one thing for sure OKC needs a legitimate point guard to run their offense.

  31. fagiolo says:

    I don’t think KD as ever been SO nice. You know, he is the New & Golden Boy of the NBA, not such a traitor as LeBron or Bosh are. I just think NBA has seen in him a Go-to-guy with a nice smile, and decided we had to see the very same guy.
    He is just showing the true competitor he is. And it is not even a bad thing, and not a critic to this everyway fantastic player.
    Just concentrate on his game, not on his smile.

    • hahah... says:

      don’t go crying if durant makes a lebron move on the thunder.. ahahahahahahaha

      Mavs in 5 or maybe 6

      MIAMI vs MAVS in the finals!!!!!

      • bob says:

        If KD will not win a championship in OKC fin his 6 or 7 season in NBA he might also think to move to another team like LBJ and BOSH when they move to MIAMI.we dont know what will happen in the future well just wait and see.

      • really? says:

        Durant has a contract to stay in OKC for the next 6 years. He is not going anywhere

    • heatalltheway says:

      dude your name says a lot about you with a comment like that….bosh a traitor for what??? and james a traitor for leaving??. i would admit how he went about it was wrong but since when is it a crime for people ot leave teams to go to other teams…u need to grow up and stop following the multitude

      • sean says:

        wat makes james a traitor is the fact he went to go play with other supstars ask any superstar from the jordan and 80’s era they never wanted to play with the other superstars very rarely would you see two stars on one team (kobe + Shaq) all lebron wants is a ring he doesnt care how he gets it or who’s on his team for that matter and for the record that is wades team and no one can say garnett pierce and allen is the same thing because they are all at the end of their career they are all over 30 and have no more than three more years in the nba and wanted to give it one last run for a ring. and lebron wade and bosh are all at their prime playing level physique the scenarios are completely uncomparable given the difference i just pointed out

      • miguel says:

        im with u on that comment i think fagiolo is just hatting because lebron and bosh did not go to his team. It’s clear to me that everybody wants to hate on miami for having 3 all stars but how about jordan, pippen and horace grant and les not forget when charles barkley teamed up with clyde and hakeem in houston to try to win a ring i didnt see anybody hatting on them miami will win in 6 games against chigago and will surprise everybody and win in 5 games against mavs and u can take that to the bank

  32. Tucker says:

    I think the Thunder will probably win the game today, but I don’t think they’ll win the series. Mavericks in 6.

  33. Harvey says:

    As long as Westbrook is being selfish on the floor OKC will not going to win. He needs to play more as a point guard not an off guard.

    • OKCKD35 says:

      OKC knew what they were getting when they drafted Westbrook, its funny to see his haters out in full force, People he was a SG in collecge, OKC decided to convert him, they know it wont be perfect right away, if people could stop hating for a little bit and realize what a player this guy is i dont think there would be all of this talk, his increased performance year after year should speak volumes of his work ethic and attitude, this guy is going to get better and better, there is no animosity on the team, it is all created by these retarded sports announcers, at one point there wasa rumor going on that KD and RW were fighting and Westbrook wanted a trade, its all lies and complete crap, have you heard one person in the enitre organization say anything negative about what westbrook is brining to the team? Nope, i didnt think so, i mean his game last night was just awful right? Quit hating! OKc is a very young team with the most talent on their roster, they have every chance at a title this year as any of the other 3 teams. Bring some fire Kd. I’m with you, a real fan! When OKC is playing their style of basketball they are very very hard to beat. I dont forsee the first quarter happening again. That was the worst quarter i have seen from the thunder, but as everyone saw this team will not give up. bring home that trophy OKC!!!!

      • benkist says:

        Agree w/ you. Give him some time to mature, get his head, he’ll be great. Thunder doesnt have the mental/technical part of this down yet. But they will. Keep it together OKC.

    • Blueprint says:

      It is not a matter of Westbrook being a selfish PG. Many of the times he jacks up shots, he has very little option to do otherwise. OKC’s plays are mediocre and don’t allow them to fully utilize all their players. Coach Brooks is the one at blame for OKC’s all-too-often offensive breakdowns and stagnancy.
      Plus, OKC is still a very young team with a very young PG. He’s still maturing and getting a feel for the game, and Brooks’ lack of good plays and multiple options leads to a very hard time on Westbrook.

    • IX says:

      Gimme a WOOT WOOT if you think Kelly Crulls hot as what!… and yea i agree with what @harvey said.