There are still non-believers when it comes to Kevin Durant.
They roll their eyes when they read yet another story describing how humble and down to earth the Oklahoma City Thunder’s scoring champ is. They think writers are blowing smoke. They think the tales about his character are all just manufactured by the media. They think what they read about Durant is too good to be true.
But you can’t make up what Durant did Monday night.
Citing boredom caused by the 4-month-old NBA lockout, Durant made the short trek north to Stillwater, where he joined a group of Oklahoma State University students for a game of intramural flag football. Playing quarterback and corner, Durant stepped in as a surprising celebrity ringer and dominated while helping his team to victory, according to those in attendance. In the process, Durant turned Halloween 2011 in Stillwater into an unforgettable night. A night that folks in a crowd that started off meager but quickly grew into an estimated count of 500 will someday tell their children about. And those who witnessed Durant on the field Monday night left with an understanding the non-believers somehow still lack: Kevin Durant is just a different breed.
It all started when Durant posted a random message on his Twitter account early Monday evening:
Overbey, taking the appropriate measures to protect his team, responded with a vital question of his own.
To that, Durant responded “forreal?”
By 10:30 p.m, the word had spread via Twitter. Kevin Durant, two-time scoring champ, two-time All-Star, two-time All First-Team NBA, was at a local park playing pitch and catch with the locals. Durant’s team name? Sigma Nu. Overbey even had time to get KD a team shirt: KD’s customary No. 35 etched on the back with “KD” emblazoned above it. Photos are here.
Oddly enough, Overbey actually played high school ball with Blake Griffin at Oklahoma Christian School. This fact, Overbey pointed out to Durant in an ensuing private “direct message” conversation on Twitter in an attempt to prove he was a stand-up guy. Overbey provided his number and Durant said again that he wanted to play. Overbey then told Durant the team runs a spread. Durant asked if he could play quarterback and told Overbey he would text him.
Word began to spread about Durant’s expected arrival, but as Sarah McCubbin, a friend of Overbey’s who was in attendance Monday night said, “no one really believed it was actually going to happen.” But McCubbin soon became a believer. She passed along these details via email.
“At around 10 there were a solid 100 people there, but still no sign of KD. Then, in typical KD fashion, he pulls up in his “party van” with about 3 of his buddies at about 10:07ish. He gets there, people freak out, he puts on a Sigma Nu jersey that the guys made for him with a 35 on it, puts on his bball (I guess they dont make KD’s for football) shoes, and then he plays the whole game. He played quarterback and his first play he threw an interception and his second pass he through a touchdown. The rest of the game he did awesome … caught interceptions, he threw incredible spirals … he was the star of the show. Faster than everyone, jumped higher than everyone … I mean, it’s exactly what you would expect from an NBA All Star playing with a bunch of frat dudes. Whenever one of the guys would do something good or there was a touchdown they would all run and do that chest bump thing with him … ya know the one that him and Russell always do? IT. WAS. AWESOME.”
According to McCubbin, Sigma Nu had to forfeit the game because Durant doesn’t belong to the fraternity. It cost Sigma Nu a shot at a four-peat. Overbey and his buddies, of course, didn’t mind.
I had soooo much fun at Oklahoma st playing flag football! Shoutout my new buddy @groverbey for inviting me! I threw 4 tds and had 3 ints!!
In the end, everyone had a good time and everyone left with a night they will remember forever.
“I mean, talk about a dream come true,” McCubbin wrote. “I’d say by the end of the game there were 500+ people there … all college students. He took pics, signed some autographs, had to have a police escort to get out of there, and then hopped in his party van and went back to OKC.
“The most incredible night since beating L.A. in Game 3 and 4 of the 2010 playoffs … no lie.”