Durant and Timberwolves star Kevin Love have bonded over the past few summers as teammates on Team USA and workout partners. Before facing each other for the third time this season, both spoke about the impact their relationship has had on the them.
“We've learned a lot from each other as far as work ethic and how we approach the game,” Love told reporters Saturday. “Obviously, he's a far different player than I am, but as far as how we show up to the game every day, get exercise, work exceptionally hard, I think in a lot of ways we see eye-to-eye.”
Said Durant: “Just being around him this summer, he taught me a lot about myself. He's just a pro's pro, a guy that comes to work every single day. Doesn't say anything, just goes out there and plays. He's a fierce competitor, but he doesn't talk about it. He's not one of those rah-rah guys that lets you know. He's just going to do out there and produce.”
Luc Mbah a Moute (groin) did not play Saturday. He would have been relied on as a primary defender against Durant. … Ibaka continued his streak of games with at least one block. His NBA-best streak now stands at 26 games. … Durant scored a season-low 13 points in the Thunder's first game at Minnesota this season. It was his fewest points since scoring 12 against Phoenix on Dec. 31, 2011. … Durant picked up a technical foul in the second quarter.
The Thunder returns home for the second night of a back-to-back Sunday against Boston. It's the first meeting between the teams. Tip-off is at 6 p.m.