Found May 21, 2013 on Player Perspective:
I think this is my favorite side of KD. OH WELL! (photo from Kevin Durant’s instagram @SniperJones35) Prayers and well-wishes to everyone affected by the tornadoes in Oklahoma. According to news sources, this is one of the worst tornado occurrences in history. Thankfully, the death toll is less than many other storms past … but any loss of life (including that of animals) is such a tragic thing.  Oklahoma Thunder star Kevin Durant (my fav player behind the illustrious Christopher Wesson Bosh) has agreed to donate 1 million dollars to relief efforts. That is awesome and I’m so happy he’s doing  that — I’m also not surprised. When I saw Durant’s announcement it got me thinking about his image and the whole concept of the “nice guy.”  What does that mean? How fully can we understand an athlete who is burdened with that tag in part because of his own statements? In a nutshell, I think of folks who are described as nice as being boring and having nothing else to offer up for a narrative. No intellectual curiosity of note, no tales of wild unruly nights to share, no particular physical gifts or markings, no sense of humor to speak of etc etc. In the dating world, when a guy is described as nice he might as well be a serial killer because I’m not interested in anyone who would cause others to see them as so lacking of description.  Kevin Durant and his mother and grandmother. (photo from Kevin Durant’s instagram @sniperjones35) But KD doesn’t really fit that mold. I think at first he provided a nice contrast to those extremely weird and very likely pathologically disturbed people who hated Lebron James. And in this “everyone-is-a-brand” society we live in the media married him to this narrative. I think on some level Durant understands that in this media environment you’re either the good guy or the bad guy and he chose to help  pigeon hole himself as a dutifully humble big kid lest he become the giant selfish monster those crazies I described earlier pegged Lebron James as. Durant’s humble act is as much a product of being raised right as it is a necessity in avoiding the contrived wild-eyed ire of the Skip Baylesses of the world.  But just as James has overcome years of being miscast as a villain, it’s time for Durant to de-emasculate himself. Durant will be 25 years old this year and he’s a grownnnn man who can do whateva he wants [Beyonce. 2013]. And if anyone is capable of giving the media a fully formed and multi-dimensional athlete to adore it’s Durant. KD might be a sweetheart with kind assessments of his more accomplished peers, a mother and grandmother he isn’t afraid to adore in public, a giving spirit, a willingness to admit being second all his life hurts, and a game that is less force than finesse…but he’s also a fashionable man who will curse out a rowdy fan in the first row, cover his body in tattoos, threaten to “slap fire” out of an offensive tweeter, show his irritable side in a presser, drop some good raps in his free time, and rack up double digit technicals during the season.  Durant is no one thing nor should he be. This season, Nike invested resources in the “KD is not nice” campaign which I wasn’t necessarily a  fan of. First of all, in black slang, the word “nice” in  basketball means great handles. So any time I’d see “KD is not nice” I’d have a visceral reaction because KD is clearly the nicest basketball player in the world aside from James. Secondly, besides the language issue, I wasn’t sure the point. Perhaps KD and Nike were trying to show us that Durant isn’t submissive to fiery teammate Russell Westbrook as many like to believe. Or maybe this was an attempt to make it clear that KD has an edge that is visually obstructed by the finesse of his game much like his many tattoos are kept hidden underneath his jersey. It all felt very blurry and unmoving.  It’s time for Nike and Durant to regroup on his marketing. KD IS nice … but there’s more to him than being that or not.      Related Posts:Kevin Durant Admits It’s Hard to See Lebron James EverydayPhoto: Is Kevin Durant Taller Than Tyson Chandler?Team USA Mens’ Basketball Schedule (for those who don’t have it)Maynard Institute Includes Me in Their 2012 Sports Journalists of Color ListWhy don’t coaches just go for it on that 4th and short?

Durant's ink shows who's got his back

A week ago, it seemed Kevin Durant's image was headed for an all-time low after he went 5 for 21 in Game 5 of the Western Conference semifinals, a game that brought to an end his Oklahoma City Thunder's season. But in the wake of Monday's tragic tornado in Moore, Okla., Durant led the charge of financial support, pledging $1 million to aid victims . And with critics...

Kevin Durant’s Giant Back Tattoo Features Jesus, an Angel, a Bible Verse and More (Photo)

It’s safe to say Kevin Durant likes tattoos. The Thunder star recently finished his back tattoo and sent out a picture of the masterpiece on Statigram. The artwork features a giant portrait of what appears to be Jesus next to a bible verse. Above that is an angel flying while carrying what looks like a basketball. Flanking the angel are two hands — one holding up a “three...

Kevin Durant to Donate $1 Million to Oklahoma Tornado Relief Efforts

OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant is pledging $1 million for tornado relief through his family foundation. The American Red Cross announced Tuesday that the gift from The Durant Family Foundation is meant to match other donations and be an incentive for more people to give. Red Cross’ regional CEO Janienne Bella said the organization was thankful for Durant’s...

Kevin Durant’s massive back tattoo is finally finished

Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Kevin Durant has finally finished his massive back tattoo. Basically, Durant was not messing around.

Kevin Durant pledges $1 million to Oklahoma tornado disaster relief

@kdtrey5 steps forward and gives $1mil matching gift to the ARC for disaster relief, text “REDCROSS” to 90999 for a $10 donation. — Red Cross Oklahoma (@redcrossokc) May 21, 2013 Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Kevin Durant has stepped up in significant way by offering monetary relief to those affected by the tragic tornado that swept [...]The post Kevin Durant pledges $1 million...

Kevin Durant Donates $1 Million To Red Cross For Tornado Relief

In a tremendous charitable gesture, Oklahoma City Thunder forward, Kevin Durant, has donated $1 million to the Red Cross for tornado relief effort in Oklahoma. A devastating tornado ripped through the city of Moore and south Oklahoma City on Monday, killing at least 51.   @kdtrey5 steps forward and gives $1mil matching gift to the ARC for disaster relief, text “REDCROSS” to...

ICYMI: Kevin Durant Donates $1 Million To Red Cross

And this is why Kevin Durant matters. This is what young, mega-star, mega-million professional athletes should be doing. The Oklahoma City Thunder forward donated $1 Million this afternoon to the Red Cross Oklahoma tornado disaster relief fund. And he plans on matching other donations. We can't say enough good things about the 24-year old, considered one of the elite players...

Durant Donates $1M to Red Cross

Kevin Durant is a good dude. His adoptive city crushed by this tornado, the Thunder superstar donated $1 million to the Red Cross to help with relief (via bleacherreport). And he did it quietly. Not even a tweet. So all this great press is really just a bonus. If this were Dwight Howard, he would’ve complained that the tornado didn’t ask his opinion on which houses to hit first...

Durant donates $1M for tornado relief

Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant is pledging $1 million for tornado relief through his family foundation.

NBA, NBPA pledge $1M to tornado relief

The NBA and the players' union are combining to donate $1 million to tornado relief efforts in the Oklahoma City area. The league and the NBPA announced the joint pledge on Tuesday. The money will be going to the American Red Cross, Salvation Army, and other disaster relief efforts after a tornado devastated the Oklahoma City suburb of Moore on Monday. The donation follows...

Russell Westbrook visits tornado victims in hospital

On the heels of the announcement that Oklahoma City Thunder superstar Kevin Durant pledged to donate $1 million to the Red Cross to assist in relief efforts in the aftermath of the tragic tornado that tore through the region on Monday, news surfaced that the Thunder organization responded in kind on Tuesday as well, [...]The post Russell Westbrook, Thunder players visit young tornado...

Oklahoma City Thunder Visit Tornado Victims In Hospital

The Oklahoma City Thunder play an active role in their community and their character shined even brighter when Kevin Durant personally, as well as the organization, donated $1 million to the Red Cross following the destructive tornado that struck their city. Tuesday, Russell Westbrook, still on crutches, and his teammates made a special visit to the hospital to visit victims.

Fiddlin' and Diddlin' Celtics Daily Links - 5/22

Herald   Thunder star Kevin Durant makes $1M tornado pledge Danny Ainge evaluates all options Globe   Whom would you rather have: Bradley or Shumpert? Celtics: Keep or replace him?Celtics Green  Ford: With the 16th Pick, The Boston Celtics Pick Dennis Schroeder Sweet 16 - A Look at the History of the 16th PickSome Paul Pierce Trade RumblingsCeltics Blog   2013 NBA Draft Prospect...
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