Kevin Durant Says He's Still the Best Player in the World

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistSeptember 8, 2015

Feb 9, 2015; Denver, CO, USA; Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) during the game against the Denver Nuggets at Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports
Chris Humphreys-USA TODAY Sports

In news that shouldn't surprise anyone, Oklahoma City Thunder forward and former MVP Kevin Durant still feels he is the best player in the NBA.   

The superstar revealed as much during an interview in Spain while promoting the Nike KD VIII basketball shoes, per Ruptly TV:

"We're under the radar, exactly where we want to be," Durant said when asked about next season, "And yes, I'm still the best player in the world."

Durant, 26, averaged 25.4 points, 6.6 rebounds and 4.1 assists per game last season, though injuries limited him to just 27 contests, a disappointing campaign just one year after being the league's MVP. 

Had Durant made these comments a year ago, many might have agreed with him, as he appeared poised to surpass LeBron James as the league's top star, even though James has four MVPs and two NBA titles to his name. 

But James carried a depleted, beat-up Cleveland Cavaliers team to the NBA Finals, where he met Steph Curry and the Golden State Warriors in June. Curry made his claim as the league's top star in the 2014-15 season as well, winning both the MVP and a league title. 

Matt Moore of CBS Sports noted the comments should come as no surprise: "Because the minute that Durant admits to himself he's not good enough, that's the moment he can't be the best player in the world."

Without question, a healthy Durant is a top-three player in the league and makes the Thunder one of the favorites to win an NBA title. For a player of his ability, expecting to be the best and believing you are the best come with the territory. 

But after last season's injury woes, Durant must both prove he can stay healthy and once again ascend to the top of the NBA world. He may believe he is the top player, but likely so do James and Curry—and Anthony Davis seems poised to enter that conversation as well—meaning Durant is going to have to back up his words with his best season yet.

 

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