LOS ANGELES — Kevin Durant of the Thunder won two ESPY Awards, including male athlete of the year, and teammate Russell Westbrook also was honored at the ESPN award show honoring the year’s best performances Wednesday night.
Durant also won best NBA player, ending LeBron James’ two-year reign in both categories.
“Everybody helped me out along the way,” the Thunder star said. “My beautiful mom watching at home who couldn’t be here. My favorite teammate, Russell Westbrook.”
Durant beat out fellow male athlete nominees Miguel Cabrera of the Detroit Tigers, Peyton Manning of the Denver Broncos and boxer Floyd Mayweather.
Westbrook won best comeback athlete, having overcome his latest knee surgery to help the Thunder reach the Western Conference finals, during the show hosted by rapper Drake at the Nokia Theatre.
During his monologue, the rapper joked about banned Clippers owner Donald Sterling, saying, “We’re a few hundred yards from Staples Center, which is as close as Donald Sterling is allowed to get.”
Clippers star Blake Griffin, who played at OCS and OU, laughed until the camera caught him and he acted serious, drawing laughs. Griffin and Drake teamed up for a funny pre-taped bit in which they pretended to be each other while spewing insults, with rapper Chris Brown joining in. Brown, who has been in and out of jail, jokingly introduced himself as “America’s sweetheart.”
The winners in most categories were determined by fan voting.
Manning didn’t go home empty-handed. He collected two trophies: best NFL player and record-breaking performance. Manning won his fifth MVP award last season, when he set single-season records by passing for 55 touchdowns and more than 5,500 yards.