LeBron James is not happy with Kevin Durant over what he had to say about the culture of LBJ’s teams, adding further intrigue to the impending Christmas Day matchup at Oracle Arena.
Durant made it pretty clear that he wouldn’t want to play alongside James, despite the rumors of him possibly joining the Lakers next summer. He appeared to shoot them down by saying this:
“He has so many fanboys in the media,” Durant told Bleacher Report’s Ric Bucher. “Even the beat writers just fawn over him. I’m like, we’re playing basketball here, and it’s not even about basketball at certain points. So I get why anyone wouldn’t want to be in that environment because it’s toxic.
James remained quiet on social media afterward, much to the surprise of many. But that doesn’t necessarily mean he wasn’t going to respond, which he did in an exclusive interview with ESPN’s Rachel Nichols.
“I was a little pissed off when I first heard it, to be honest,” James said. “I didn’t know where it stemmed from. So I was pissed, my family was pissed, and my friends were pissed. We just didn’t know why, at this point and time in the season, my name or what I’ve done in my career was kind of talked about like that. I don’t feel like it’s ever been toxic around me. And when I hear ‘toxic,’ I automatically thought, ‘toxic’ is like you don’t wanna be around that because it’s almost like a fatal disease.”
LeBron is the master at resurrecting issues that we once thought were dead, in order to draw attention to himself, at the perfect time. Here he is again, somehow, front and center, ahead of Tuesday’s epic matchup. Somehow, it’s always all about him, which is exactly what Durant was referencing — and he’s right.