The Golden State Warriors and Oklahoma City Thunder faced off Thursday night for the first time since Kevin Durant joined the Warriors in the offseason.
Prior to the game, the reunion of Russell Westbrook and Durant was the biggest story, as the two have reportedly had an icy relationship since Durant’s free-agency decision.
While Durant led the Warriors to a blowout of his former team, those hoping for an icy exchange between Durant and Westbrook weren’t let down. Not only did the two former teammates not exchange pleasantries before the game, according to ESPN’s Royce Young, Westbrook’s pregame sartorial choice may have been a jab at Durant.
Westbrook, a fashion enthusiast, entered Oracle Arena wearing an orange vest that read “Official Photographer.” Young believes it may have been a subtle shot at when Durant took photos at Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco and mingled with Warriors players.
“Westbrook specialises in clever subtlety, and directly mocking Durant’s photography isn’t really his style. What’s more likely, as suggested by someone with insight into his thinking, is it was a nod to Durant’s post on the Players’ Tribune in which he took pictures at Super Bowl 50 last February. After playing the Warriors on a Saturday night, Durant stayed over in the Bay Area to attend the Super Bowl that Sunday and spent time with some Warriors players, which is when some believe the official recruitment process began.”
After the game, Durant brushed off questions about Westbrook’s outfit, saying, “I don’t care what anybody wearing to the game, man. Who gives a s—. I don’t care what he wore.”
Here was Westbrook’s pregame outfit:
Kevin Durant loves photography, so naturally Russell Westbrook showed up in an ‘Official Photographer’ pinnie. #NBA https://t.co/hdXtEC7zgA pic.twitter.com/TJ33u8oJ9C
— NBC Sports (@NBCSports) November 4, 2016
After the game, Westbrook said that he once saw a photographer wearing the smock and asked if he could have one for his upcoming fashion collection. He added, “There’s no particular reason [for wearing it tonight], there’s no story behind it, it’s just that, because I wanted to wear it. I don’t wear anything for nobody.”
The drama on the court didn’t quite live up to the billing, as Durant torched the Thunder for 39 points, while Westbrook struggled, scoring 20 points on 4-of-15 shooting. There’s a long wait until the two teams will square off again (1/18), but it seems fair to say that emotions may linger between the two sides.
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