Kevin Durant hijacked the Fourth of July.
The Players Tribune outscooped NBA beat veterans like Adrian Wojnarowski, Marc Stein, Marc Spears, Chris Broussard and a legion of up and coming non-traditional media.
Of course the scoop and the speculation was not to be scooped.
That was part of the deal.
To get the deputy publisher of The Players Tribune you cannot divulge any indication of what the said deputy might choose in free agency.
So there it was the Players Tribune headline spread across the website’s large free newsletter subscriber base and on social email:
“My Next Move”
The post published by deputy publisher of The Players Tribune, Kevin Durant, who also moonlights as a 6-foot-11 NBA swing forward, announced he wanted a change of scenery or to further his maturation as a person. He would be taking his talents to Oakland. A la the King in 2010, a la South Beach.
A challenge. A different place.
Durant didn’t mention the Golden State Warriors are already stacked with talent and arguably one of the most talented NBA teams in recent or league history. Perhaps that was believed to be self-evident on this Independence Day.
Social media cried: He’s chasing a ring.
In reality the sports entertainment business is really now largely a function of what we call social media: Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and others. TV and print and the like are really accessories which debate and show the images.
In terms of hot takes, an NBA executive told ESPN’s Jeff Goodman that now everyone is just playing for second, including LeBron James.
Goodman Tweeted you can’t blame KD for wanting to ensure himself a ring, when it was likely not going to happen in OKC.
ESPN’s Stephen A. Smith said on the air that this was the weakest move by a superstar ever.
Still many others moved into the direction of Oklahoma City’s heartbreak and it’s twisted love affair with the NBA in which it landed an NBA franchise at the heartbreak and pain of another good basketball city called Seattle. Many social media pundits imagined that Seattle would be happy to hear the city which stole their team was now suffering as well, and likely that was not the case in any form of reality but in terms of social media it seems to all make sense.
In reality, the one shining piece of truth through it all is that Jerry West is a very staunch NBA executive who has never gotten the credit for helping the Warriors build what they have now or helping the Lakers build what they had when he helped lure Shaquille O’Neal from Orlando in the 90s’.
Marc J. Spears of The Undefeated, points out that according to people in the know, the key to the ‘Dubs landing Durant was none other than the logo himself. The influence of Jerry West is the story that doesn’t grab headlines and is hard to say because the story won’t be told in full.
In the end, the fruition of a July 4th weekend of social media humdrum won’t be fully realized until November when KD and Crew play a real basketball game.
In the mean time, the NBA should write Twitter and several other websites a big check for keeping the minds of real thinking humans preoccupied on its league year-round for yet another July to remember.
The decision part six lived up to the hype.
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