Mac McClung surprised a lot of people late Saturday night when he put forth one of the most memorable NBA Slam Dunk Contest performances in years.
That said, while in hindsight his participation in the tournament seems like a genius move, many believed he shouldn’t have been part of it initially.
Case in point: Phoenix Suns star Kevin Durant.
Prior to this year’s NBA Slam Dunk Contest, Durant specifically bashed McClung’s inclusion.
Kevin Durant reacts to G-LEAGUE player Mac McClung being in the NBA dunk contest in 2023 pic.twitter.com/pGilyamtgZ
— 2Cool2Blog (@2Cool2Blog) January 30, 2023
“Mac McClung, that’s crazy that they doing that. No shade, but what we doing?” Durant said recently.
“And Mac is an outstanding athlete, but what are we doing? It used to be sacred to be a part of All-Star Weekend. Last year we had G-Leaguers come in and play in the rookie game. Now, like, what are we doing?”
Durant’s overall point was that All-Star Weekend events, like the Dunk Contest, should feature stars.
“We need Zion [Williamson], we need Ja [Morant], I think the stars come back, and just add, because I mean it used to feel like there were stars in it every year when I was a kid,” Durant noted.
“All the best players in the league, those guys I liked, were in the Dunk Contest.”
While Durant’s overall point is one that everyone can agree with, him choosing to specifically take a jab at McClung, the guy who won the whole thing, didn’t go unnoticed.
Fans took to social media to react.
@KDTrey5 Mac McClung would have you hopping to another team by the time the dunk contest was over if you tried to go against him
— BUCKets (@BUCKetsinsix) February 19, 2023
— L McD (@LMcD34785232) February 19, 2023
Durant always keeps it real. Whether he is getting brutally honest about Kyrie Irving breaking up the Brooklyn Nets or breaking down Kobe Bryant’s true place in hoops lore, he calls it how he sees it. And he stands by his opinions.
Based on that, it’s unlikely he would ever apologize for his McClung take.
— Game 7 (@game7__) February 19, 2023
That said, it definitely looks a little silly with hindsight being 20/20.