Kendrick Perkins to Kevin Durant: ‘You don’t even feel like a real champ’

Then-Oklahoma City Thunder teammates Kendrick Perkins, left, and Kevin Durant in 2012.
Kevin Durant, right, and Kendrick Perkins attend an Oklahoma City Thunder practice June 20, 2012.
(Don Emmert / AFP via Getty Images)

Kendrick Perkins called out Kevin Durant on Thursday night, tweeting that his former Oklahoma City Thunder teammate “took the coward way out” by leaving that team and joining the Golden State Warriors as a free agent in 2016.

“Truth be told you don’t even feel like a real Champ,” Perkins tweeted to Durant, who won two titles and two NBA Finals MVP awards with Golden State.

Durant got a few zingers in as well during a Twitter exchange that was sparked earlier in the day when Perkins, who is now an NBA analyst for ESPN, tweeted that Russell Westbrook is the “best player to have ever put on a Oklahoma City Thunder Jersey.”

When someone pointed out that Westbrook hasn’t been able to get the Thunder into the second round of the playoffs three straight years, Perkins replied: “KD lost in the second round without Russ when I was there. So what that mean?”


Hours later, Durant jumped in with a response to Perkins’ comment.

“Yea and our starting center @KendrickPerkins averaged a whopping 2 and 3 during that series,” tweeted Durant, now a member of the Brooklyn Nets. “U played hard tho champ lol”

Perkins acknowledged his lack of production during that 2013 series, which the Thunder lost in five games to the Memphis Grizzlies.

“Facts on the averages and facts on the Champ part too!!!” tweeted Perkins, who won an NBA title with the Boston Celtics in 2008.

Durant responded with a handshake emoji, and it appeared all was well — until Perkins called out Durant for joining the Warriors weeks after they beat Oklahoma City in seven games during the Western Conference finals.

“Boy stop you did the weakest move in NBA History!!!” Perkins tweeted to Durant. “Up on a team 3-1 in the western conference finals and then go join them the following season?! Heart of Champion right there.”

Durant responded: “Weak is starting at center, playing real minutes with no production. Should’ve worked on your skills as much as I did.”

But Perkins was on a roll at this point.

“That’s fine!!! You worked that hard and still had to go join a 73-9 team,” Perkins wrote. “Truth be told you don’t even feel like a real Champ, you have hard time sleeping at night huh knowing that you took the coward way out!!!”

That was it for the direct exchange between Perkins and Durant, at least publicly. In his replies to other users, though, Durant indicated that the apparent Twitter feud really wasn’t a big deal.

“We talkin hoops not life,” Durant wrote. “There’s a difference.”