In his first game back in Memphis since Game 6 of the second round of the playoffs, Durant admitted that his lobbying last month for former Grizzlies forward Shane Battier was real.
“I was dead serious,” said Durant, who used Twitter in late November to attempt to recruit Battier. “I wanted him since last year, after we beat them in the playoffs. I was telling a few of the guys, ‘Shane would be a good fit here for us.’ He was a guy I was looking forward to playing with, but Miami jumped in and took him.”
Durant said he understood why Battier chose to sign with the Heat.
“Let’s be real,” Durant said. “Guys like LeBron (James) and D-Wade and (Chris) Bosh, they’re lobbying for you as well. And it was me and Nazr Mohammed and Nick Collison lobbying for him. And you look at the names there, you look at Miami, the weather and just that whole aura around those guys and of course he’s going to pick them. But it’s a decision that he made for him and his family. You can’t really be upset about it.
“Shane’s an unbelievable player, a great teammate from what I’ve heard. I wish him the best. If he would have come here it would have been perfect for us.”
— Via Darnell Mayberry of The Oklahoman