It’s hard to imagine now, but Kevin Durant was once one of the most loved players in the NBA. His favor changed almost instantly when the All-Star forward left the Oklahoma City Thunder to join the already great Golden State Warriors. Durant’s legacy has been attacked since that day, being called a ‘cupcake’ or having his decision invalidated by analysts and former players alike.
One of the former players that have been most critical of Durant has been the Hall of Famer Charles Barkley. Barkley recently unleashed an epic rant about Durant, calling him ‘Mr. Miserable’ and questioned Durant’s leadership.
“All the old guys, he get mad we say it, (but) he piggybacked on the Warriors to win his first two championships,” Barkley said Thursday on Arizona Sports 98.7. “But if you go back and look at his career, as the best player and being the leader that all goes with that, he’s been an abject failure. Every time he’s had to be the leader and best player, he has not had success. That’s what us old guys think about him.
“He seems like a miserable person, man. I call him Mr. Miserable, he’s never going to be happy. Everybody’s given him everything on a silver platter. He was the man in Oklahoma City, they loved him, he owned the entire state. He bolts on them and wins back-to-back championships (with Golden State), and he’s still not happy. Then he goes to Brooklyn, they give him everything he wants, and he’s still miserable.”
Shaquille O’Neal Adds his Comments to Barkley’s
Barkley’s ‘Inside the NBA’ co-host Shaquille O’Neal was asked on a recent episode of his ‘The Big Podcast‘ about his broadcast partner’s recent criticism of Durant, and O’Neal agreed with Barkley that Durant ‘piggybacked’ for an NBA Championship and added some critique of his own.
“If you go back and look at his career as a best player being the leader, all goes with that too. We were all there. We saw OKC up 3-1. One more game and when you’re the guy, all the pressure goes on you. A lot of people was talking about the bus driver. Chuck was absolutely right. He was not driving the bus in Golden State. You were on the bus. You were sitting up front.
So when guys like us go ‘Woah, woah, woah, woah’ and you win and we don’t respect it, don’t get mad at us. That’s how we feel. This is the attitude that Kevin Durant is gonna say, ‘Whoa, I got this many points and I got this and I got that.’ We’re not talking about that. We’re talking about you, the guy, and in championship moments, can you take it to that next level? We haven’t seen that yet,” O’Neal said.
Shaq Calls Kevin Durant a Failure
Shaq also echoed Barkley’s statement that Durant is a failure and because he hasn’t led a team outside of the Warriors to a title, the 12-Time All-Star has ‘failed.’
“Yeah. … If you’re the guy and you ain’t get it done, that means you failed,’ O’Neal said.