Kevin Durant and P.J. Tucker had something of a contentious relationship throughout the Brooklyn Nets’ second-round playoff showdown against the Milwaukee Bucks.
Tucker enjoyed as much success as one possibly can against someone of Durant’s talent level, but his primary wins came when he was able to get under the 32-year-old’s skin.
This confrontation from Game 3 serves as a good example:
That said, while tensions obviously ran high during the games, Tucker made it clear to show his respect to Durant after the fact
“Me and Kevin fight every year…I love guarding him. I enjoy it. He’s the best scorer I’ve ever seen in my life…that’s my brother, we compete, we fight every game, we’re gonna fight again in Game 7”
PJ Tucker vs. Kevin Durant – not the disrespectful rivalry you think it is. pic.twitter.com/QAVvKPmdFN
— Nets Videos (@SNYNets) June 18, 2021
“Me and Kevin fight every year,” Tucker said before Game 7.
“… I love guarding him. I enjoy it. He’s the best scorer I’ve ever seen in my life … that’s my brother, we compete, we fight every game, we’re gonna fight again in Game 7.”
The fact that mutual respect exists between both men is probably why Durant’s mother, Wanda, felt so comfortable getting flirty with Tucker on Saturday night.
Flirty jokes notwithstanding, Milwaukee ultimately emerged from Saturday’s affair with a narrow victory – earning an Eastern Conference Finals berth in the process.
Durant’s reaction after the fact spoke for itself.
Despite it all, the 32-year-old future Hall of Famer managed to battle back from a horrible injury to lead his team to the precipice of the Eastern Conference Finals.
Clearly the Nets came up short this year, but they’ll definitely be a force to be reckoned with in 2021-22.
Yikes Adrien Broner https://t.co/6PvzjfA3yH
— Game 7 (@game7__) June 14, 2021
A longtime sports reporter, Carlos Garcia has written about some of the biggest and most notable athletic events of the last 5 years. He has been credentialed to cover MLS, NBA and MLB games all over the United States. His work has been published on Fox Sports, Bleacher Report, AOL and the Washington Post.