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Kevin Durant to return to OKC for Nick Collison’s jersey retirement

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Durant will be back in the ‘Peake, but not as an opponent.

NBA: Oklahoma City Thunder-Media Day Mark D. Smith-USA TODAY Sports

Thunder legend Nick Collison is going to have his jersey retired by the Thunder in a March ceremony. And Kevin Durant is going to be there.

Reported over the weekend by Adrian Wojnarowski, Durant reached out to the Thunder front office to let them know, and they were happy to accommodate.

Woj writes:

The Thunder are aware of Durant’s plans to attend the ceremony and are glad to accommodate him, sources said. Scores of ex-Sonics and Thunder teammates from Collison’s 15-year career are expected to be in Oklahoma City for the event. Durant has long credited Collison’s leadership in easing his transition into the NBA when Durant arrived as the No. 2 pick in the 2008 draft. He spent a season with Collison in Seattle before the franchise relocated, and eight more together in OKC.

While the intention might have met with a different response even a year ago, both the Thunder and Durant appear to be ready to move forward on good terms. And Durant’s desire to elevate his former teammate is an important part:

“That group was so special, that whole group from 2010 until I left there, it was special,” Durant told ESPN. “It’s about time for us to let go of all that extra stuff, and just come together -- especially around this time, because it’s Nick.”

While the gesture is significant in Durant’s willingness to take a step back from his own role in the Thunder’s trajectory over the past 3 seasons, it is likely some Thunder fans will still harbor some resentment, and it will be curious to see the reception come March.

Poll

How do you feel about Durant’s intended presence during Collison’s jersey retirement ceremony?

This poll is closed

  • 24%
    Hate it - #35 will always be persona non grata in the ‘Peake
    (77 votes)
  • 55%
    Love it - everyone has moved on, and it’s all about Nick
    (173 votes)
  • 19%
    Don’t care either way
    (59 votes)
309 votes total Vote Now