Berry Tramel: For Kevin Durant, the shooting has never been this bad

by Berry Tramel Modified: November 2, 2009 at 11:20 am •  Published: November 2, 2009
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photo - Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant (35) looks up at the scoreboard during the final minute of the NBA game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Portland Trail Blazers, Sunday, Nov. 1, 2009, at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD
Oklahoma City's Kevin Durant (35) looks up at the scoreboard during the final minute of the NBA game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Portland Trail Blazers, Sunday, Nov. 1, 2009, at the Ford Center in Oklahoma City. Photo by Sarah Phipps, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD
For one night, Greg Oden got the best of Kevin Durant in the eternal dual of the 2007 NBA Draft’s top two picks.

Of course, for one night, most anyone who ever laced up sneakers would have got the best of the Thunder Wonder.

Durant missed 18 of his 21 shots Sunday night at the Ford Center, the chief reason the good guys lost 83-74 to Portland and mathematically eliminated themselves from an unbeaten season.

Don’t laugh. You might see an 82-0 season before you see a superstar go 3-for-21 again. The last NBA player to take at least 20 shots and shoot worse than 14.3 percent was Detroit’s Rip Hamilton, who was 3-of-22 (against Portland) in December 2004.

Tossing the ball through the hoop from every corner of Oklahoma County seems to come natural for Durant, but Sunday night he couldn’t have hit a Del Rancho chicken fry if you’d have spotted him the gravy.

"It got to the point where I would shoot the ball, it would look like it was going in and bounce right out,” Durant said. "Seven or eight times in a row. Never happened to me before.”

Never? "Nope,” he said.

Not on the D.C. playgrounds or in Austin pickup games or in that rookie season in faraway Seattle?

"Nope.”

Believe him. That’s a Cleveland Browns quarterback percentage, 14.3 percent. That’s an A-Rod World Series.

Would have been nice for the Thunder to stay undefeated with the Lakers coming to town Tuesday night. But the Boomers will beat no one with Durant going 3-for-21.

Clang, clang, clang went the trolley, all night long, as Durant kept bouncing shots off the rim.


by Berry Tramel
Columnist
Berry Tramel, a lifelong Oklahoman, sports fan and newspaper reader, joined The Oklahoman in 1991 and has served as beat writer, assistant sports editor, sports editor and columnist. Tramel grew up reading four daily newspapers — The Oklahoman,...
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