Kevin Durant Heaps Praise On 'Dominant' Drummond: "He's Fun To Watch"

Detroit's big man has a fan in the former MVP.

97.1 The Ticket
November 04, 2019 - 1:55 pm

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With a strong start to the season, Andre Drummond is doing his best to prove to the Pistons that he's a true star in today's NBA -- and a worthy piece of the team's future

He needs to do no such convincing of Kevin Durant. The two-time Finals MVP said he's a big fan of Drummond on the Players' Tribune Knuckleheads podcast with Quentin Richardson and Darius Miles. 

"I like a lot of bigs that just play strong and hard. I like watching Andre Drummond when he’s on the boards," said Durant. "He’s dominant on the boards. ... He's got a skill for that. He's up there."

Richardson, who was the Pistons director of player development from 2014-16, said he used to tell Drummond, "'I can tell when you hooping and when you BS-ing. If it’s the first six, seven minutes and you ain’t got seven rebounds, you BS-ing.’ I used to tell him that on the day, like, 'I want to see you get 20 or 30 rebounds. I want to see it.'"

Drummond has led the NBA in rebounds three of the past four years, and he's right back in front to start this season. He's averaging 18.7 per game. The last NBA player to post 20 boards per game was Wilt Chamberlain in 1968-69. 

"I think he can get 20 a game if he put his mind to it," said Durant. "That’s tough to say because they’re playing such a spread game over there in Detroit, but he’s special on the boards. I like watching him. And playing against him, you don’t realize how strong he is. He’s one of the strongest in the game.

"I like Andre a lot. I think once he gets with a great point guard and just a great system, I think with D-Rose this year, they’re going to toss that lob up to him. D-Rose knows exactly how to play, get some vets around him, I really like Andre Drummond. He’s fun to watch."

Drummond, 26, is signed through 2021, but he's indicated he plans to opt out next summer to test free agency. Pistons owner Tom Gores said last month that it's a "top priority" to keep Drummond in Detroit long term, which could mean an extension before the end of this season. 

If that's what he's playing for, Drummond is off to a good start. He's posted at least 20 points and 20 rebounds in four of the Pistons' seven games thus far, including each of the last three. His efforts have been doubly important in the absence of Blake Griffin

No matter what happens in the months and years ahead, Richardson believes Drummond will go down as one of the best rebounders ever. 

"He’s special, he’ll be an all-time great. I don’t care what else he does, he will be an all-time great rebounder, because he has a knack. ... He’s one of the most athletic big guys there’s ever been."