Steven Adams Recalls Kevin Durant Tweeting 'SMH' After Being Drafted by Thunder

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistSeptember 3, 2018

Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) and center Steven Adams (12) leave the court at the end of the first overtime period of an NBA basketball game against the Orlando Magic in Orlando, Fla., Friday, Oct. 30, 2015. The Thunder won 139-136 in double overtime. (AP Photo/Phelan M. Ebenhack)
Phelan M. Ebenhack/Associated Press

Kevin Durant apparently had a lukewarm reaction to his former team, the Oklahoma City Thunder, selecting Steven Adams with the 12th overall pick in the 2013 draft.

In his book, Steven Adams: My Life, My Fight, Adams recounted hearing of Durant's initial response to his arrival on draft night (h/t NBA on ESPN):


In his book, Steven Adams recalls KD's initial reaction to him being drafted by OKC. https://t.co/7hlrFfh5H2

Durant provided a more hospitable welcome on Twitter:

Kevin Durant @KDTrey5

Welcome Steven Adams

Durant also addressed the rumor he didn't want the Thunder to select Adams at the time, calling it a "buncha bulls--t" (warning: post contains profanity).

To be fair, though, Durant wouldn't have been the only person in Oklahoma City shaking their head over the team's decision.

The Thunder were coming off a second-round exit in the playoffs and were in the NBA Finals in 2012. Given that, one would've expected Oklahoma City to target a player who could help right away.

Instead, Adams was the choice. He spent one year at Pittsburgh, averaging 7.2 points, 6.3 rebounds and 2.0 blocks. While Adams flashed plenty of potential, many assumed he'd need a year or two of seasoning before he could contribute to the Thunder in a meaningful way.

Sure enough, Adams was putting up 6.2 points, 6.0 rebounds and 1.0 blocks per game through his first three seasons, per Basketball Reference, while showing improvement from year to year.

The 25-year-old has since become a vital piece for Oklahoma City. His 13.9 points and 9.0 rebounds in 2017-18 were a career high, and the Thunder had a 5.0 net rating per 100 possessions with him on the court. The team's net rating fell to minus-0.6 when he was on the bench, according to NBA.com.

Durant's deleted tweet is another example why it's rarely a good thing to have knee-jerk reactions on draft night.


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