The Final Word on My Contract Extension
WhatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s going on everyone? Our USA Basketball training camp is winding down here in Vegas, and Thursday was very memorable because I was able to share the court with two of my teammates, Jeff and Russell, for a few minutes during a scrimmage against the Select Team. It was pretty neat to be out there with the guys. WeÃ¢â‚¬â„¢re just trying to represent OKC and USA!
We also had a pretty good practice before we scrimmaged, focusing mostly on defensive schemes and roles. I was trying to get after it on the defensive end when it came time to play. I know I got a bit better as a defender last season but I know thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s always a lot of room for improvement.
I gotta say, thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s been quite a bit of media out here this week. It seems like thereÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s new reporters every day. So of course IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m getting a lot of the same questions, and one big one I keep getting is how I handled my contract situation. I know I havenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t blogged about my contract extension, but I think I owe it to you all to let you know how it went down and why I handled it the way I did.
First off, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve always said that Oklahoma City is a place I want to be and I couldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t imagine not playing for the Thunder, especially with these great teammates and coaches and support staff. So when I got approached with a contract extension once negotiations could start, signing it wasnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t a very hard decision. It was really a no-brainer. If people were paying attention to what IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve been saying for the last three years, then theyÃ¢â‚¬â„¢d know my heart has always been with the Thunder. This organization has been moving in the right direction since the day I got here.
Now as far as announcing my signing through TwitterÃ¢â‚¬Â¦..cÃ¢â‚¬â„¢mon, what else would you expect?!?! You all know how much I love Twitter and Facebook and social media in general. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve met so many fans through social media. ThatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s how a lot of us athletes connect with fans in this day and age. I love giving out free tickets or Nike gear and answering all your questions, even the crazy funny ones. So I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t think twice to announce my contract extension through Twitter. I wanted to make sure all my fans and supporters were the first to know, and most importantly to get the news straight from me!
Now, the friends and family and fans who know me werenÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t surprised that itÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s how I let everyone know. But some people keep asking why I didnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t announce it on national television or something like that. I really get a laugh out of that. I keep telling people how my situation was much different from all the other big names out there. First of all, I was just up for a contract extension. LeBron, Chris Bosh and D-Wade, those guys were unrestricted free agents, so there was more hype with their decision, more people who wanted to know what was gonna go down. That’s a big difference.
And as I told someone the other day, LeBron James is the biggest name in sports. Nothing he does is ever going to go quiet. You canÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t blame him for what happened and how he made his decision. Again, my situation was totally different.
But whether I signed the contract extension this summer or next summer, once I stepped on the floor here in Las Vegas for this Team USA camp, everything else went out the door for me. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m always focused on whatÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s in front of me. Of course IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m glad the contract is done. ItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s a blessing. But to be here right now, I just want to be focused and try to do something IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ve never done before, which is play for the USA team.
So hopefully that explains everything for yÃ¢â‚¬â„¢all. IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll try to get another blog up before we leave Vegas this weekend.
Tags: Contract Extension, Kevin Durant, Kevin Durant Blog, Oklahoma City Thunder, Summer 2010, USA Basketball