OKLAHOMA CITY -- It's true what the Nike ad says. Kevin Durant is not nice.
Nope. Nice isn't the right word. Kevin Durant is kind, he's genuine, he's just a good human being.
Off the floor, strictly speaking here. Which is where example number two thousand of Durant's nice escapades took place.
Following the Thunder's disappointing 114-104 loss to the Cavaliers at home, their third such loss on their own floor, something that hasn't happened since their inaugural season in OKC, Durant went through the standard postgame obligations. Answering questions about what went wrong, about why they played poorly, about what needs to change. It's necessary to stress this part: The Thunder's loss against the Cavs might be the worst home defeat they've had in four years, and there's no other way to describe Durant's demeanor after it than anything but pissed.
But he wrapped up his duties, then he sauntered back to the empty court to meet with his family, hugging his mother Wanda, and chatting with close friends.
About that same time, Fox Sports camera operator Mark Voyles was wrapping up his nightly game duties as well, unhooking cords and cables, and packing up to go home. One pesky cord got caught, though.
"I was helping roll up the cable behind the visitors bench, and it got hung on the stands," Voyles said. "And I walked down to the stands where it was an unhooked it. I was walking back to finish that task, and I tripped on a piece of aluminum. The two decks weren't lined up properly, and a little tiny little rise in the deck, and I tripped over it.
"Luckily, the cleaning staff was doing their job efficiently, because when I fell, I fell face first into an open trash bag," he continued. "On the way down, I tried to catch myself with my right hand on one of the stands by the chairs, and caught it somehow. Instant pain, and I figured it was broke, so I tucked it against my chest because I was kneeling on the ground."
Enter good guy Kevin Durant.
"Kevin came over," Voyles recalls, "and said 'Are you OK?' I said, 'Well, I think I broke my finger.' He looked at it and said, 'Yeah, that looks broke.' I said, 'Ah, it's all right. I have broken fingers before.' But he said, 'No, you need to go see the trainer.' He insisted I go back there."
So Durant helped Voyles up, and escorted him back to the Thunder's training room.
"I mean, I'm not going to say no," Voyles said. "He was kind of my knight in shining KD's to come and rescue me."
Voyles said Durant walked him back to find the team's doctor, while making some smalltalk about a new vehicle Durant had evidently recently purchased.
"He called me 'Sir' the whole time, but I told him I'm no sir," Voyles said.
Durant dropped Voyles off with the Thunder's team doctor, Donnie Strack, and let him have a look. Strack put a splint on Voyles finger and sent him on his way. He went ahead and had an X-ray done today, and Durant's diagnosis proved true: A broken ring finger on his right hand, right at the knuckle.
"Kevin was very polite, being a gentleman the whole way," Voyles said. "I've always been a Thunder fan and a KD fan, but now I'm one for life ... KD's a gentleman. I've always heard the stories, but now I have proof."
The story, which originated on Reddit, is the second in recent weeks to pop up on social media showcasing the kind spirit of Thunder players. Just a week ago, it was Serge Ibaka who saw a young man fall off his bicycle at the mall and came rushing over to help him.
"I think it has a lot to do with Oklahoma," Voyles said. "I think the heart and soul of what true Oklahomans are, has rubbed off on both Serge and KD. I'm not saying that didn't have heart and soul before. I'm just saying, what Oklahoma is made of, is now part of them."