Sadly, Kerr’s statement didn’t come to fruition as he was booed and called “Cupcake” coming out of the visitor’s tunnel for pregame warmups. With white Beats by Dre headphones covering his ears from the mass hysteria of the pre-dominantly Thunder crowd, Durant calmly went through his pregame routine and went over to the visitor’s tunnel to sign autographs.
The starting introductions didn’t get much better for Durant as the P.A. announcer who had been announcing his name for years for the home team said in a monotone disdained voice, “Starting at forward, 6’9″ from, Texas number 35 Kevin Durant.”
The booing and “Cup-cake” chants echoed throughout Chesapeake Energy Arena every time Durant touched the ball or made a mistake. It made him struggle early, but as the game wore on, Durant looked like the franchise player the sellout crowd had enjoyed and loved for eight years in Oklahoma City.
The booing and taunting from Thunder fans justified a couple of things: how much they underappreciated the countless hours of hard work he put in on the court to make the Oklahoma City Thunder a title contender year in and year out and how much he meant as a community. It showed how undervalued he is as a person and the kind of character he has.
Throughout all of the jeers and taunts, he had to hear and go through on Saturday night back in Oklahoma City, there was one person that felt sadness and despair and that was Wanda Durant, his mother.
Talking with ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne after the Warriors’ 130-114 victory over the Thunder, Mrs. Durant clearly was distraught about the treatment her son received during the game.
“They called him a snake, a sellout, a b—-,” she said. “It’s just a sad day. I understand that they loved him. I do understand it. But the name-calling. The people with the cupcakes on their backs. … It didn’t have to be like this.”
Having Mrs. Durant deal with all of the backlash and pettiness from fans who are upset with her son’s decision to play basketball in a different city that makes him happy is ridiculous. The derogatory name-calling to a player’s mother who was supporting her son play for a team that makes him happy confirmed that it was the right decision to leave Oklahoma City.
Despite the backlash Mrs. Durant received from fans coming up to her and calling her son hurtful names and the boos and “cup-cake” chants Kevin Durant received, he still came out on top when the night was done.
It was just over a minute left to go and the Warriors were up by 16, the ball had just been passed to Durant, who was showered with boos and jeers. Standing 30 feet out near the hashmark, he stared down Russell Westbrook and launched a deep three.