Kevin Durant’s Inspirational MVP Speech: A Lesson in Gratitude


KEVIN DURANTNBA scoring leader and Most Valuable Player. Greatest basketball player in the NBA this season.

Jeff Caplan wrote that Durant is the first player since Michael Jordan to:
1. Score at least 25pts in at least 40 games (MJ in 1987-1987)
2. Average 32.0 ppg, 7 rpg and 5 apg (MJ in 1988-89)

And he’s the first to have at least 35pts, 10 rebounds and 5 assists in 3 consecutive games since Larry Bird.

Most of us see the highlights, the exceptional shots, dunks, assists and game-winners. We see the wins and the losses, the rise of a leader. The rise of KD.

In his acceptance speech, KD emphasized that he did not do it alone. He had help and inapiration. He singled out his mom and each teammate. He thanked everyone who helped him reach his dream.

Winning an MVP trophy is seen as a celebration of an individual’s brilliance. An individual’s amazing effort and success. But Kevin Durant set the record straight. He became an MVP because of the people around him. He is still standing despite all the adversities that have happened to him as an individual, to his family and to Oklahoma- the city which his team is based.

He thanked the veteran players in his team who inspires and sets an example for him. He thanked the young players for looking up to him and thus made him consciously elevate his game. He thanked OKC Thunder’s management for believing in the team.

Kevin Durant is a supremely talented basketball player and a great leader. But what sets him apart from everyone else is his appreciation of the people around him. His speech showed that he does not take anything for granted.

We could all take a page from Kevin’s book. Let’s start (or continue) to appreciate what people do for us. As Kevin implied, we cannot succeed on our own.


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