By the time Kevin Durant had finished dressing, only a small crowd of reporters remained in search of sound bites from the biggest star of the night.
Moments earlier, it took Thunder coach Scott Brooks more than three minutes to even mention Durant's name during his media session.
“Is he an afterthought?” Brooks asked. “I could mention him every game. But you get bored with that. Every game you could say KD had a great game and he did a lot of great things for us to put us in position.”
This, it seems, is what happens when your extraordinary becomes ordinary.
On a night that the Thunder found itself in a surprising tussle with the Dallas Mavericks, who thoroughly outplayed OKC for much of the night, Durant stood and delivered a dominant performance his team desperately needed to have any shot of securing its 111-105 overtime victory.
But by the final buzzer, all that Durant had done to keep the Thunder within striking distance became lost in yet another action-packed thriller against the Mavs.
His final line, however, said it all: 40 points, 13-for-28 shooting, eight rebounds, five assists, three blocked shots and one steal in 48 minutes, 48 seconds.
“Tonight, our energy level was low on both ends of the floor,” Durant said. “We let us missing shots dictate our defense, and we can't do that. We've been having that problem here lately.”
Sensing his team headed for another slow start, this one having the potential to send the Thunder to its third straight loss, Durant was as dialed in as he's been all season. Judging by the hustle plays he turned in throughout the night, his will to win Thursday appeared unmatched by anybody else on the court.
“He was in attack mode, knocking down shots.” said Russell Westbrook, who scored half of his 16 points in overtime and added 10 assists and just two turnovers. “He did a good job of staying aggressive. He did a good job of rebounding, blocking shots and scoring the basketball, of course. It was one of those nights for him.”
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