In a recent article in ESPN, Kevin Durant came clean about what went wrong last season. After LeBron James' Finals defeat, he came back mentally stronger. Unfortunately, after James dealt James a Finals defeat, he returned angrier than ever.
"Last year, I was obsessed with it," Durant told The Oklahoman of winning a title. "Like, I wasn't going to sleep because I wanted to win so bad. I was screaming at my teammates, at the refs, at the coaches. I got mad because I thought 'if we have a bad game here, we're not going to win a championship.'"
All the while, Durant was feeling that he needed to play perfectly each night and held his team to that same standard.
"Like, for me, when I was coming in I was like 'If I miss a shot, I'm going to miss this shot in Game 6 of the Finals,'" he said in the report. "'If we don't play defense this game, we're not going to play defense in the Finals.' Like, I was thinking like that. And I was going home and I would get so mad over small stuff. That's not me. So I was losing myself over what people thought, what other people thought."
Kevin Durant also had 12 technical fouls last season, more than what he had his first five years combined.
This is a good example of when chasing an NBA title goes wrong. Durant claims to have learned his lesson from last season and will use those lessons to cope with with the challenges he has ahead. With James Harden now in Houston, with Dwight Howard by his side, and Russell Westbrook’s return still up in the air, Durant will learn how to make his team better while keeping his anger under control.