“At 19 years old, when I came out of St. John's, I was fresh out the hood, fresh out of Queensbridge,” World Peace said. “So my mentality was still a struggle, defensive and things like that. So I wasn't really conscious.
“But I'm 34 years old now. (Smart's) a young kid. I wish I would have listened when I was a kid, to my elders or to people who had my best interest at heart. And then I wish I would have been more conscious at my age. Those are two things that if you were to reach out to a kid like Marcus, a talented kid, a future leader in the community, you would tell him those things.”
Within the Thunder and Knicks locker rooms, Smart seemed to have the support of players who will eventually become his peers. Whether it was in conversations off to the side or in comments to the media, the general consensus seemed to be “lesson learned.”
“We're all human,” Durant said. “Words do hurt. Some things should be kept to yourself, but that's the name of the game. Marcus Smart is a good kid. We should all love on him and show him some grace and move past it.”