Future Hall of Famer Kevin Durant entered the NBA with immense support from his community. He turned his natural gifts and work ethic, inspired by his family, into an unbelievable level of success. That’s why, even sitting on the bench for the Brooklyn Nets, he’s still worth more than almost every athlete on earth.
The 6-foot-10 sharpshooter has a head for business, as well. He credits the savvy approach to his massive wealth to his mother and grandmother, as well. Some readers may notice a pattern emerging: Where is Durant’s father?
Kevin Durant’s mother and grandmother were instrumental to his NBA career
The Durant family core orbited around Wanda Durant, Kevin’s mother. Wanda raised two boys while living in poverty as a single mother. Her heroics as a parent, with her own mother as a backup, were Herculean. She even got the Lifetime movie treatment, details ESPN, such were her remarkable efforts in setting her boys up for successful lives.
Called The Real MVP, the film references Durant’s NBA MVP speech. Durant’s own words say it best: “We wasn’t supposed to be here. You made us believe. You kept us off the street. You put clothes on our backs, food on the table. When you didn’t eat, you made sure we ate. You went to sleep hungry. You sacrificed for us. You the real MVP.”
Her relentless drive forged her son into a well-rounded adult. Although critics often see Durant as a distant, even awkward personality, his actions show a canny figure in the sports world. He hired the best agent in the game and is already investing his considerable wealth into burgeoning sports ventures. For all this, he repeatedly and openly credits his mother’s guidance.
How Durant reconnected with his estranged father
Durant’s mother is clearly the center of his life, even now. The story of his father — with whom he tellingly does not share a last name — is more fraught. At 23 years old, Wayne Pratt took stock of his two children and wife. As he told The Undefeated, he selfishly walked out on his family, feeling unable to cope with family life.
Today, Pratt recognizes his terrible mistake. “I felt like I was immature, selfish, I was young, he said to the Washington Post. “I didn’t know what I was getting myself into, but my sons helped me realize how important it was to be in their lives by always wanting me to be around.”
Pratt mentions in the interview that he later became a police officer, which he still is to this day. His upgrade in responsibilities changed his outlook on life, helping him to resume contact with his son. But Durant was hesitant. While Pratt appeared at Durant’s high school games to cheer him on, the two stayed icy for a decade before rebuilding their familial connection.
Do Durant and his father maintain a relationship today?
Durant and Pratt continue to develop their father and son relationship. While Wanda is still the most public-facing of the repeat All-Star’s parents, Pratt now advises Durant behind the scenes. He even had a role in one of the most controversial decisions of his son’s career.
When Durant hit free agency, Pratt pushed him to “be selfish,” as he later told The Undefeated. He wanted his son to push for the biggest offer possible.
Durant was somewhat ambivalent about pursuing a title, as he told Yahoo Sports at the time. But the idea of going with a team willing to pay basically anything to get him on board appealed. For the first time in his NBA career, he took on guidance from his father, and he prospered.