The best thing that can happen to a sports fan is that the team he roots for ends up with a player who could potentially become the best in the sport.
Such was the case in 2007 when the Portland Trailblazers followed conventional wisdom and selected big man Greg Oden with the first pick in the NBA draft instead of Kevin Durant AKA KD, AKA The Durantula, AKA Gerge Gervin, Jr.
It was a foregone conclusion the Seattle Supersonics would take Durant with the second pick, but I had to watch the draft anyway just to make sure nothing stupid happened. Sure enough the Sonics did the right thing and picked the player who could save basketball in the Emerald City.
At the time Seattle was mired in a bureaucratic stand off between an idiot mayor, a slimy Oklahoma oilman, an the NBA czar David Stern. The Sonics were sold by coffee mogul Howard Schultz to Clay Bennett in 2006 and Clay promised to keep the team in Seattle as long as the city built a new arena.
After three months it was apparent the new owner had ulterior motives. As if it wasn't bad enough, Clay planned to pick up the Sonics and move them to Oklahoma City, he was also taking the future of the NBA with him.
In the back of my mind I felt Kevin Durant would show the fans of Seattle and city officials that he was the real deal and worth fighting for.
Kevin didn't disappoint.
He earned rookie of the year honors and averaged 20 points per game. City officials didn't do their part, however, and the worst case scenario became reality: Seattle Supersonic Kevin Durant was to become Oklahoma City Thunder Kevin Durant. I knew Seattle was losing a great player, but I had no idea he would be so good so fast.
Kevin Durant's second season was difficult to watch. He was coming into his own, quietly averaging 25 points while ownership sold out every game and gathered a nice, young nucleus around him.
I couldn't bring myself to be happy for Kevin because I felt cheated.
I felt like his maturation into a basketball god should be witnessed in Seattle. Oklahoma City couldn't possibly appreciate him the way Seattle could.
There was jealousy, envy, and disgust running through my veins. Not only was Kevin Durant putting up big numbers on the court, he was establishing himself as a leader and pillar of the community off the court.
He even attended summer league games to support his teammates and give them encouragement. What superstar does that?
Midway through Kevin's third season I started to feel ill. I watched an interview in which Kevin proclaimed to Magic Johnson his love for OKC and that it was where he wanted to play his entire career.
The Bennett's had brainwashed him into thinking OKC was the place to be. If he loved OKC imagine the dedication and devotion he would've shown to Seattle?
He would eventually end the season winning his first scoring title (averaging 30 points a game) and signing a five year extension to stay with the Thunder.
If he wasn't going to be a Seattle Supersonic the least he could do was play in New York, Chicago, or LA, where everyone could see how great he was. Playing in OKC for five more years was a slap in the face.
Then came USA Basketball and the World Championships.
Without Kobe Bryant, Lebron James, D Wade, Chris Bosh, Deron Williams, Chris Paul, or Carmelo Anthony, Kevin Durant single handedly put the USA team on his back and carried them to a gold medal.
He simply annihilated the competition, won the FIBA World Championship MVP, and set all–time records for scoring in the process.
It was at that point I got sick to my stomach.
Kevin Durant had become unbearable to watch. His skills are extraordinary and, at 22, his potential is limitless. Scoring titles? MVP's? Championships? There's nothing Kevin Durant couldn't accomplish, but he would be doing it all in Nowhereville, OK.
Durant's exit from Seattle to OKC is like no other occurrence in the history of sports. There's no other comparison. It is the equivalent of the Colts drafting Peyton Manning and then moving them the team to Cheyenne, Wyoming. It is the equivalent of drafting Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, or Lebron James and then moving the team to Des Moines, Iowa.
He didn't get traded or leave in free agency; THEY UP AND MOVED THE TEAM!
The better Kevin Durant gets, the more it hurts to watch. And he's getting better everyday. I know this sounds like sour grapes, but I have good reason. It's not everyday a city gets robbed of its basketball team with the potential MVP of the league on the roster. There's no possible way to make up for this injustice.
For now I'll have to watch in amazement and wonder what could have been. Life is not always fair.
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