Kevin Durant Has Special Fan in Attendance for His Return to Nets [WATCH]

Kevin Durant

Getty Brooklyn's Kevin Durant reacts after taking a shot in a game against the New Orleans Pelicans at Barclays Center on April 07, 2021 in New York City.

At long last, Kevin Durant made his much-anticipated return to the Brooklyn Nets on Wednesday night. The 11-time All-Star had not played in a game since February 13, his lingering left hamstring strain forcing him to miss 23 straight games.

The Nets went 19-4 over that span as James Harden and Kyrie Irving ensured they’d continue winning.

Still, the return of Durant means another third of Brooklyn’s Big Three is back in the mix. Before his injury sidelined him, Durant was posting MVP-caliber numbers with 29 points, 7.3 rebounds and 5.3 assists per game. His shooting efficiency also was MVP-worthy; KD shot 52.4 percent from the field, a career-high 43.4 percent from 3-point range and 86.9 percent from the free-throw line.

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Durant’s Mother in Attendance for His Return

Wednesday’s game against the New Orleans Pelicans marked Durant’s first game this season in front of Brooklyn fans; the Nets played without fans in the stands at Barclays Center through the first portion of their schedule due to COVID-19 safety measures.

To no real surprise, Durant’s return was met with a standing ovation from the Barclays Center crowd when he stepped onto the court midway through the second quarter.

One fan stood out among the crowd. In her white jacket and sparkling mask, she rose to her feet before raising her arms as her son took to the floor.

Durant’s mother, Wanda, wasn’t going to miss this one.

The Real MVP

The Nets’ official twitter handle was on point with its caption about Durant finally returning to the hardwood, which included a video of Wanda cheering her son on.

Durant, after all, famously called his mom “the real MVP” during the speech he gave upon winning the 2014 MVP Award.

“I don’t think you know what you did,” Durant said in the speech, addressing his mother. “You had my brother when you were 18 years old. Three years later, I came out. The odds were stacked against us. Single parent with two boys by the time you were 21 years old. Everybody told us we weren’t supposed to be here. We went from apartment to apartment by ourselves. One of the best memories I had was when we moved into our first apartment, no bed, no furniture and we just sat in the living room and just hugged each other. We thought we made it.

“When something good happens to you, I don’t know about you guys, but I tend to look back to what brought me here. You wake me up in the middle of the night in the summer times, making me run up a hill, making me do push-ups, screaming at me from the sidelines of my games at 8 or 9 years old. We wasn’t supposed to be here. You made us believe. You kept us off the street. You put clothes on our backs, food on the table. When you didn’t eat, you made sure we ate. You went to sleep hungry. You sacrificed for us. You the real MVP.”

Kevin Durant in tears: Mom is the 'real MVP'Oklahoma City Thunder's Kevin Durant delivers an emotional speech thanking his mother for his NBA MVP award. More from CNN at To license this and other CNN/HLN content, visit or e-mail

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Like He Never Left

Durant’s return to the Nets on Wednesday was nothing but encouraging. He showed no ill effects of the injury that sidelined him for about two months, moving smoothly and cutting sharply.

His impact was felt immediately. Durant, who came off the bench for just the second time in his NBA career, had nine points in seven minutes, 37 seconds to close out the half, and the Nets were plus-11 over that span. Then he opened the third quarter with a 3-pointer to extend Brooklyn’s lead to 23 points.

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