Kevin Durant is a legend. The basketball player, who came from a single-parent family and had a strong faith, has become a national basketball star. He is a new word or tendency in the world of sports, as he significantly differs from the rest by his lifestyle, beliefs, and vision of life and success. To find out the undercurrents that have shaped Durant’s character and made him what he is now, the presented paper will examine his timeline and stress in the most crucial moments of his life that led him to such an overwhelming success.
Kevin Wayne Durant was born on September 29, 1988 (Kevin Durant’s biography). Though his birthplace was Washington, DC, Durant spent his childhood in Maryland together with his elder brother Tony. They were raised by Kevin’s mother, Wanda Pratt, and her mother, Barbara Davis.
Durant’s father had left the family before Kevin’s birth. Thirteen years later, he reappeared in his life. Like Kevin’s mother, Wayne worked for the government, at the Library of Congress (“Kevin Durant’s biography”). However, Kevin’s grandmother played a crucial role in his life. She was the first one to notice his enormous height. Also, she was aware that Kevin knew that he differed from his classmates. To ensure that her grandson will not stand out too much, Barbara asked teachers to put him at the end of the line. She already knew that a brilliant and successful future was waiting for her grandson.
In the meanwhile, Kevin and his brother Tony were always engaged in some sports-related activities. They both became members of the Baltimore-area sports teams, which included the Washington Wizards. After being voted MVP in a high school competition, Kevin met Michael Jordan.
Durant’s success emerged with the PG Jaguars, the youth basketball team at the Amateur Athletic Union in Maryland. During Durant’s tenure, the team managed to win two national championships. At those times, Durant acquired his own number, 35, in honor of his coach, who was murdered at the age of 35.
Additionally, during his education at high school, Durant had grown seven inches more, having reached the point of 6’9″. Those years, Durant played for many teams, including National Christian Academy, Montrose Christian School, and the basketball powerhouse Oak Hill Academy. Undoubtedly, this experience had paid off during the further years of Durant’s career.
The previous achievements of Durant made him a young basketball star who was sought after by many colleges. Indeed, Durant was overwhelmed with the offers as his basketball star had already emerged in the basketball sky and overshadowed the ones of others. Top Division I colleges offered everything from the covering of tuition fees to promising the job opportunities. Despite the assertions made by his friend Tywon Lawson, Durant signed a contract with the University of Texas at Austin. Here, he came into touch with his current Longhorn assistant, Russell Springman.
As Longhorn, Durant participated in every game during his first year at college. His average result was 25.8 points per game (“Kevin Durant’s biography”). Thirty times, he had scored 20-plus, and eleven times, his score was above 30 points per game. After Durant had hit the record of 92 points, he was named the Big 12 Tournament’s Most Valuable Player. However, later his team lost to the University of Southern Carolina at the Athletic Association Men’s Basketball Championship.
Additionally, the basketball achievements of Durant were acknowledged by awarding him the Oscar Robertson and the Adolph F. Rupp awards. He was the first freshman who won both honors. Durant played only one year for the Texas Longhorns before starting to play for the NBA. Also, Durant won the prestigious Naismith and Wooden awards and demonstrated that he was ready to become a national basketball star.
Having finished only one year at the college, Durant claimed that he was eligible for the NBA. That year, the Seattle SuperSonics chose Durant to be the second overall in the first round. Then, Durant signed a $60 million contract with Nike. Durant was selected as the member of the NBA’s All-Rookie First Team. He was also named as the NBA’s “Rookie of the Year”. After the year, the SuperSonics relocated to Oklahoma City and became the Oklahoma City Thunder. Three times, Durant was recognized as an NBA All-star. He also led the league for three times and became the eighth player that has achieved that.
The international sports community also knew of Durant’s play. Eventually, he was named the 2010 FIFA World Championship MVP by the IBF. In 2012, he played for the US Olympic Team (“Kevin Durant’s biography”). In 2012, his team won the gold medal at the Olympic Games in London.
The story of Durant is free from scandalous events and provocative deeds. On the contrary, Durant has always seemed to be a basketball player, a sportsman that differed from the rest. The key reason for that was his stroll faith. The tenets of Christianity have become his essence, his inevitable part that served as a guide to the basketball environment. In many interviews, he had mentioned his solid Christian preparation and studies. During his childhood, he had frequent conversations with his mother over certain Christian values and the most important decisions in his life.
Moreover, Durant, despite all his achievements, had never been accused of being too arrogant or self-conceited. On the contrary, he admitted that overtime someone praised him, Kevin remembered himself that he could always do better. Of course, such inner mantras kept him from getting rest and stimulated him to work better. He was taught to behave in this way. Being aware of the great future waiting for Kevin, his family had done everything to ensure that he would not become a victim of flesh fever.
Another thing that had contributed to Durant’s success was his ability to follow the recommendations of the coach. Kevin was not self-centered or self-confident, which is a trap for every person that shows promising results. Instead, he frequently met his coach to discuss his weaknesses and strengths. For such a talented player, it might have been hard to admit his flaws or failures. Durant was above it and managed to minimize the risks related to his game on the arena.
It should be admitted that Durant was a brilliant team player. First of all, he allowed others to grow both professionally and personally. Secondly, he also served as an example to follow, the better one. Even more, being conscious of the permeability of success and fame, Durant had managed to keep friendly and warm relations with his team players. Moreover, he was not afraid of competition and even started to follow the practices of the former team leader while recognizing the achievements the latter made for the sake of the team’s success.
Durant was always aware of his fate and the role of fame in it. In fact, he always stressed that the fame and success could be gone one day. Therefore, he should work harder and harder today. This stress on the present-day activities and their role for the future of human being have been at the heart of his success story and the stories of many people coming from various fields of activities including business, sports, politics, economics, etc. That is the golden rule for every person who dreams of better future. They know that the better future is created today.
Moreover, Durant makes the first steps in the direction of charitable activities. He has established the Kevin Durant Family Foundation to support the families and children (Schwerha). He still has a decade or more years to play for the NBA and walk through the Hall of Fame (Hubbard). Even nowadays he is concerned about the future. Once more, it proves one of the basic principles of his life, which is to build a better future one should invest today. Durant states that he has always wanted to help people. His mother taught him to show empathy to others and help them in times of despair. However, now, times changed and Durant had become a star. Moreover, he indeed realizes the influence he may have over others. Understanding that, he is aware that while doing something good he sets the example to follow for thousands of ordinary Americans.
There is no doubt that Durant is a great player. Physically, he fits all the requirements of the ideal player. Due to this, he assisted his team in winning many national championships and even the Olympic Games in 2012. His success story is admirable. At the same time, there is something behind his brilliant career. Therefore, it would be wrong to say that physical conditions are not always determining in a basketball career. The same applies to Durant, the cornerstones of whose success include proper professional ethics based on Christian canons and the offensive gifts that he knows how to process. The recipe for his success also includes the ability to follow and to give others a chance to grow, the capability of sober evaluation of one’s skills, and the awareness of the temporality of fame.