Westbrook, Durant 'back on talking terms' (Anthony-NBA-ESPN)

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Kendrick Perkins said he brokered a phone call between Russell Westbrook and Kevin Durant that took place after Westbrook eclipsed Oscar Robertson’s triple-double record last month.

Perkins, a teammate of Westbrook and Durant with the Oklahoma City Thunder from 2011 to 2015, recalled in an appearance on TNT’s “Area 21” on Tuesday night that after he had been attempting to “figure out a way to try to make them talk again, because I felt like the outside world was putting a beef there that really wasn’t too serious,” that Durant messaged him with the news.

“I think the night that Russ actually broke the record, I had texted KD,” Perkins said, referring to April 10, after Westbrook and Durant had yet to officially speak since Durant joined the Golden State Warriors in July. “The next day, he was talking about something and he sent me a text and was like, ‘Me and Russ had a nice conversation.’ The media don’t even know nothing about it, but I just let it be known that they’re back on talking terms, the differences are aside.”

Perkins, 32, didn’t play this season but has said he isn’t ready to retire.

He added that Durant’s eventual return to the Thunder wasn’t out of the question.

“I wouldn’t be surprised — if KD makes a little run, I wouldn’t be surprised if he goes back to Oklahoma,” Perkins said. “Because in my opinion, I don’t think Russ is going anywhere. He’s that type of guy. He just wants to stick it out, and he just wants you to give him those pieces and he just wants to roll with it. He’s not going and trying to run and chase [titles]. And one thing about it, he’s not begging nobody to come play with him.”

The apparent phone call was a stark cry from three months ago, when neither Westbrook nor Durant was interested in talking about their relationship during All-Star Weekend. They did connect in the All-Star Game, as Durant fed Westbrook for a lob in the first quarter, just a minute after Westbrook checked into the game for the first time.

During training camp, Westbrook told reporters he wasn’t answering any additional questions about Durant, though he did handle a few in early February, leading up to Durant’s return game in Oklahoma City. Then during that game, the two had an on-court exchange, with Westbrook yelling, “I’m coming!” and Durant responding that Westbrook was still going to lose.

Westbrook said following the Feb. 11 contest — a 130-114 Warriors victory — that he had moved on, with him focused on his team while Durant focuses on his.

Information from ESPN’s Royce Young was used in this report.


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