The Norman Transcript

Sports

April 6, 2014

Durant’s improvement in all facets fueling MVP talk

(Continued)

OKLAHOMA CITY —

“Sometimes, to be honest, this year, I wanted a tech to inspire my team to do something,” Durant said. “I wanted a tech to psych myself up and make myself feel stronger and better than what I was doing and to pump me up a little bit.”

Brooks has talked to Durant about toning it down, and Durant concedes that nearing a suspension is taking things too far. He now ranks with the likes of lightning rods DeMarcus Cousins and Lance Stephenson. As of Thursday night, only Cousins had more technicals, with 15.

“I’ve got to be better and smarter with how I approach the refs, how I approach other teams,” Durant said.

The Thunder have been willing to forgive Durant’s occasional outbursts because of his overall play and the fact that he works so hard at his game. To his teammates, the big numbers have been nice, but the consistency is what has left them shaking their heads.

“What he does is tough to do,” Collison said. “I think we take it for granted. To be able to stay on for long periods of time — have to cut hard, catch the ball in the right spot and defend on the other end — is tough to do. To be able to show that shows that he has an edge to him. He doesn’t take a night off.”

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