Kevin Durant’s jersey number is 35, the same number as the age he envisions himself retiring from the NBA at, per ESPN’s Chris Haynes.
“This game, your craft, you have to continue studying it,” said Durant. “No matter how much you enjoy it, nobody wants to be in school that long. I know I don’t. At some point, you have to be ready to graduate. Thirty-five, that’s just a number in my mind.”
Durant turns 30 years old September. Assuming he signs a maximum five-year extension with Golden State this summer — he’s already said he plans to re-sign — it’d be his last contract in the League after a 16-year playing career. If he were to play beyond five years, it’s likely he could compete for the all-time scoring title, but Durant said that’s not a priority to him.
“It’s not about [the record],” Durant said Friday. “I can leave the game knowing I did everything I wanted to do, my way, on my terms. That’s how I want to leave the game. And if I happen to have all these accolades and these accomplishments, then that’s cool. If not, I’m still cool.”
Rich Kleiman, Durant’s business partner, said he’s heard him talk about walking away at 35, but told ESPN that “I’ll believe it when it happens.”
Durant has won back-to-back NBA Finals MVP awards since joining the Golden State Warriors two seasons ago.