Thunder small forward Kevin Durant, who is set to become an unrestricted free agent this summer, understands that every comment he makes regarding other NBA cities will be magnified, but he doesn’t feel that he needs to censor his opinions, Anthony Slater of The Oklahoman writes. “I love being in Philly, too,” Durant said, addressing reaction to what he said this week about Boston. “If you ask me about a city, I like being there. I’m not going to say anything bad about it. That’s how I am. I’m not going to watch what I say. Because I know how I’m saying it and my intentions in saying it. People are going to pick and choose what they want to write and I can’t control that. But I can control what I say. And I’m not going to hold my tongue or answer things differently or walk on eggshells because I don’t want stuff written about me. I’m just gonna be who I am. Of course people are going to say stuff. I like playing in Boston, like the city, it’s a cool city, they ran with that one. But I know how it is. It’s all good.”
Here’s more from the Northwest Division:
- Timberwolves rookie point guard Tyus Jones has shown marked improvement in his 3-point shooting this season after numerous scouts had expressed concern over his shooting range during the predraft process last season, Jerry Zgoda of The Star Tribune writes. “I’m confident in myself, confident in my game and it’s something I’ve always prided myself on,” Jones responded when asked if his success has surprised him. “That’s something you have to focus on, especially running the second unit. You want to come in and be sure we’re efficient. That’s what I’m trying to do.” The 19-year-old has connected on 42.4% of his shots from beyond the arc on the year.
- The acquisition of point guard Shelvin Mack has paid off for the Jazz, who have benefited from his consistency and leadership since he arrived from Atlanta, Jody Genessy of The Deseret News writes. “He is a smart player. That is one of the reasons that we traded for him,” coach Quin Snyder said. “I think it’s really a familiarity and comfort level. We know how much we need each other as a group and we’ve got good unselfish guys that support each other. They have probably made that easier for him and I think that he certainly understands that it can help the group and help him impact the group in a positive way.”