Kevin Durant paused. He took a stutter step — not unlike one that separates him from his defender for a tear drop or finish at the rim — until someone summoned him. Deciding that it was too late now, he bounded up the stadium-style seating at Manhattan’s 40/40 Club against oncoming traffic: daps, onlookers, smiling faces, flashing lights. He was loathe to interrupt an auction for Robinson Cano’s Super Heroes Fundraiser and Dominoes Tournament. Durant took his place, greeting Cano himself, Yankees pitcher CC Sabathia, Vice President of Roc Nation Sports Rich Kleiman, Executive Vice President Def Jam Sean Pecas and, finally, Jay-Z.
Just hours earlier, Durant posted a picture to his Instagram, confirming the since-rumored move. “Grateful for this opportunity with Roc Nation Sports,” it read above the photo. “It’s go time.” The date was June 24.
Jay-Z said, “He has a 90.5% free throw shooting rate, the youngest player in NBA history to join the 50-40-90 club, a giving individual and a legend in the making. What more can I say?”
Hov’s affirmation that there’s never been a player this good or this young, is for all of Durant’s humility that has made him basketball’s golden child prince to Lebron James’s king, signals that the hashtag accompanying the photo and the marketing surrounding Jay-Z’s new album, Magna Carta Holy Grail: there really are #newrules.
This week, Durant, the Oklahoman’s Darnell Mayberry, said that joining Roc Nation means nothing as it relates to his basketball career.
“He has nothing to do with if I’m going to leave OKC or none of that,” said Durant. “I heard that before so put that out on the table. He has nothing to do with that. He knows his lane with me. Their team knows their lane with me. And they’re letting me handle the basketball part. I would tell fans not to worry about that at all.”