Kevin Durant is passing Allen Iverson on the NBA career scoring list. The feat was unfathomable to many fans and it’s now part of a larger debate about who deserves the title of “best scorer ever.”
Kevin Durant has passed Allen Iverson on the NBA career scoring list. “It’s all surreal” said Durant. Read more in detail here: where is kevin durant from.
11:59 p.m. Eastern Time
ESPN’s Tim Bontemps
BOSTON (CBS) — During Brooklyn’s 123-104 win against the Celtics at TD Garden on Wednesday night, Nets star Kevin Durant claimed it “means the world” to him to overtake Hall of Famer Allen Iverson for 25th place on the NBA’s all-time scoring list.
“It means everything to me. I’ve been devoted to this game since I was a kid… so I’ve been watching all these people that I’m passing over, “Durant said after scoring 21 points to help the Nets move to a 14-5 record in the Eastern Conference.
“I aspired to be just like them. I want to be in the NBA like them, making an impact in the league. So, for me, Iverson was the pantheon. One of those people who I tried to imitate whenever I went outdoors to play with my pals. It’s all a little unreal. I saw myself in the league and had a plan… but to really execute it is rather remarkable.”
Passing Iverson has two implications for Durant. He was not only a child when Iverson initially burst onto the NBA scene in the 1996-97 season, but he also had a front-row seat to Iverson’s collegiate exploits at Georgetown while growing up in the Washington, D.C., region.
Durant stated he tried to mimic Iverson’s iconic crossover as a kid, even while he was playing center for his boyhood teams.
“Obviously, I became a major Iverson fan my first year, just like everyone else.” But watching him at Georgetown and playing for coach [John] Thompson, and seeing the culture that they developed there, he was a significant part of it,” Durant added. “But after he got into the league, he had guys… On my youth team, I was a center, power forward, and we were all long crossing and double crossing.” He had a significant impact on a large number of individuals.
“So to pass him on the list and to be included with some of the greats is unbelievable. All I have to do now is keep going.”
Durant, who passed Iverson with his first basket of the game Wednesday night and has a chance to break into the top 20 scorers in NBA history this season, and the Nets continued their recent strong play with a win over the Celtics (10-9), who had won eight of their previous 11 games before falling behind by as many as 29 points against Brooklyn.
Going up against Ime Udoka, the Celtics’ coach, who worked as an assistant coach with both the Nets last season and Team USA last summer under Gregg Popovich, added an additional dimension of joy to Durant’s victory. Durant revealed that there was some “friendly” trash talk between the two during the game, and that winning in Boston was made all the sweeter by the fact that Udoka was on the other bench.
“It became tough between me and Ime last year and during the Olympics,” Durant remarked. “It’s simply nice trash talk,” says the narrator. He says so much s—- to me, I mean. Yeah, I suppose the fact that our two teams are competing helps. We’ll all be here towards the end of the season.
“It was great to defeat Ime. I’m looking forward to coming here and winning in Boston. It’s a difficult location to play in. But now that Ime is a coach, it’s much more enjoyable.”
The Nets, who are shockingly sixth in the NBA in defensive rating, restricted Boston to 37.4 percent overall shooting and 11-for-48 from 3-point range, with Boston’s dynamic wing duo of Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown shooting 9-for-31 from the field and 1-for-17 from 3-point range.
Brown, who was a game-time decision as he tries to heal from a hamstring ailment that lost him eight games before he returned Monday in a victory over the Houston Rockets, said, “Not discouraging at all.” “We’ve been playing excellent basketball, and we need to keep playing good basketball.”
“We can’t allow the next four, five, six, or seven games be dictated by this defeat. We have to get back on our feet. That’s what successful teams do.”
The Nets’ defensive effort, along with the fact that they shot over 50% from the field and made 14 of their 35 3-point attempts, inspired James Harden to proclaim Wednesday as Brooklyn’s most complete game of the season.
Harden, who ended with 20 points, seven rebounds, 11 assists, and two steals, responded, “Definitely.” “So far, at least. It’s just been maybe 20 games or so. But, so far, yes, and we can continue to improve.”
Now, the Nets head home to face the Phoenix Suns, one of just two teams in the NBA with a better record than the Nets so far this season, along with the league-leading Golden State Warriors. Despite the Warriors’ overwhelming victory over the Nets in Brooklyn last week, Durant highlighted that Saturday’s game, win or lose, isn’t particularly important in terms of showing the Nets where they are.
“Every day, we assess who we are,” Durant added. “We recognize that these teams are coming in and doing well. However, it is November. Every team wants to be that round into shape in the middle of the season, just when the playoffs are approaching.
“I’m not saying we should throw any games away, but win or lose, I don’t believe this will tell us much about where we’re heading as a team, you know what I’m saying? But we clearly want to go out there and adhere to our values while improving our skills. I comprehend the records and tales around games and other things from the outside looking in. However, I don’t believe this can tell us anything about what will happen in the future.”
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