Kevin Durant is the First Longhorn to Win Finals MVP

When the final buzzer of the NBA season sounded last night, just after midnight on the East Coast, all eyes were on one man. After turning in his fifth-straight 30-point game of the series, leading the Golden State Warriors to their second title in three seasons, there would have been a minor riot at Oracle Arena if Kevin Durant weren’t named NBA Finals MVP. When NBA Commissioner Adam Silver presented the Bill Russell Trophy to Durant a few minutes later, he became the first Longhorn to earn Finals MVP honors.

Read: Kevin Durant talks going from the Forty Acres to the pros

Durant averaged 35.2 points, 8.4 rebounds, 5.4 assists, and 1.3 blocks for the series, and shot 55.5 percent from the field. He became just the third player to win Finals MVP in his first season with a new team, joining Magic Johnson in 1980 and Moses Malone in 1983.

“Everybody for the last 10 years knew how good he was, but until you break through and win that first championship, there is still—there’s always still something there,” Warriors coach Steve Kerr said after the game. “I’m just so happy Kevin has broken through, and there’s more to come from him.”

Read: A conversation with Kevin Durant

Durant last played in the finals as a member of the Oklahoma City Thunder in 2012, a 4-1 loss to the Miami Heat. With Durant’s first championship ring he becomes the fifth Longhorn to win a finals series, joining Slater Martin, Dexter Pittman, Cory Joseph, and Tristan Thompson.

As the gold and blue confetti flooded Oracle’s hardwood, a familiar face emerged from the crowd: Durant’s mother, Wanda Pratt. You may remember her from Durant’s 2013-14 regular season MVP acceptance speech, an emotional tribute to Pratt that went viral. When her son cemented his legacy as an all-time great with a championship ring, she joined him on the floor, for another series of touching moments between the duo.

“We did it,” Durant said to his mother after accepting the Finals MVP award. “I told you when I was 8 years old. We did it.”

Image via Kevin Durant on Facebook

 

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