Kevin Durant Keeps Close Track of LeBron James’ Stats

by April 24, 2013

They may be friends off the court, and offseason workout partners. But don’t let that fool you—Kevin Durant takes his rivalry with LeBron James very seriously, and desperately wants be the top dog in the L. KD admits that he obsessively keeps track of LBJ’s stat lines (as well as his own). Per SI: “‘That’s my guy,’ Durant says. ‘I looked up to him [James], and now I battle him.’ […] ‘I don’t watch a lot of other basketball away from the gym,’ Durant says. ‘But I do look at LeBron’s box score. I want to see how many points, rebounds and assists he had, and how he shot from the field. If he had 30 points, nine rebounds and eight assists, I can tell you exactly how he did it, what type of shots he made and who he passed to.’ […] ‘People see two young black basketball players at the top of their game and think we should clash,’ Durant says. ‘They want the conflict. They want the hate. They forget Bird cried for Magic. A friend was getting on me about this recently, and I said, ‘Calm down. I’m not taking it easy on him. Don’t you know I’m trying to destroy the guy every time I go on the court?’ […] Durant has hired his own analytics expert. He tailors workouts to remedy numerical imbalances. He harps on efficiency more than a Prius dealer. To Durant, basketball is an orchard, and every shot an apple. ‘Let’s say you’ve got 40 apples on your tree,’ Durant explains. ‘I could eat about 30 of them, but I’ve begun limiting myself to 15 or 16. Let’s take the wide-open three and the post-up at the nail. Those are good apples. Let’s throw out the pull-up three in transition and the step-back fadeaway. Those are rotten apples. The three at the top of the circle — that’s an in-between apple. We only want the very best on the tree.'”