NBA players around the league are still sharing their thoughts on the surprising retirement announcement from Kobe Bryant, and Kevin Durant took a strong stance on how the media has treated him lately. Durant went with expletives "I've been disappointed this year because you guys (media) treated him like shit. He's a legend and all I hear is about how bad he's playing, how bad he's shooting, time for him to hang it up," Durant said, as reported by Anthony Slater of The Oklahoman. "You guys treated one of our legends like shit and I didn't really like it."
Durant's been critical of the media in the past, most infamously following a "Mr. Unreliable" headline that The Oklahoman eventually apologized for being to "harsh" of the superstar forward. Bryant's been under heavy scrutiny in what will be his final season, and his fall off has been one of the biggest stories to start the season. He's shooting just 30.5 percent on 16.9 field-goal attempts per game.
Here's the entire quote on Kobe from Durant, via Slater:
Kevin Durant on the criticism of Kobe: "You guys treated one of our legends like sh** and I didn't really like it" pic.twitter.com/Nza1C0ey0E— Anthony Slater (@anthonyVslater) November 30, 2015
Considering the stance the National Basketball Players Association has taken on media presence in the locker room, there's certainly a growing rift players aren't afraid to confront. That it's Durant serving as the mouthpiece on this, even if he's just sharing his own personal thoughts on Kobe at a reflective time, is interesting in that context.
There's been objective criticism of Kobe Bryant that's certainly warranted attention, but as the poor performances pile on, the spotlight's only gotten brighter.