“It’s a different situation than I thought because Ray Allen is not a part of the team anymore unfortunately,” Durant said in a telephone interview from New York. “But I really never got to meet Ray, so it really doesn’t hurt as much as if I would have known him.
“I thought he was going to be there. He’s a great player, and I would have loved to learn from him. But now I’m on the team and I can’t wait to be a part of it.”
“I don’t think I’m ‘The Man,’” Durant said. “I would say that I’m willing to work hard and hopefully one day I could be a key contributor to the team. But as far as ‘The Man,’ I don’t think I’m the man.
“I’m just going to go in there and work hard, and whatever my coaches need me to do I’ll do. It really doesn’t matter. I know my teammates are going to help me out. I just can’t wait to start.”
“I’ve known Jeff for awhile now, and I really didn’t expect him playing with me,” Durant said. “Jeff is very versatile. He can play (small forward, power forward, center or shooting guard). I just can’t wait to get out there and play with him.”
“It may very well (add more pressure),” said Sonics chairman Clay Bennett. “That’s certainly an issue. But we’re going to do everything we can to support him and teach him, help him and respond to his needs. We’ll do all that we can as a complete organization to enhance his play and enhance his experience and to help him become the professional that we all know he can be.”
“We’re interested in keeping Rashard,” Bennett said. “What (the move) does is allows us flexibility and allows us to remain in the mix for Rashard, and we’re interested in doing that.”