Says he thought he “was going to Dubai,” but life in India was “rough,” with “cows in the street, monkeys running around everywhere.”
NBA star Kevin Durant recently visited India, built community courts and even set a Guinness World Record for conducting the largest basketball training camp ever, featuring 3,459 Indian children.
During, what was termed as a highly successful trip, the NBA Finals MVP took part in several activities in the NBA Academy and also visited Taj Mahal.
On his return to the United States, Durant shared his thoughts with The Athletic . The gist of it: though it was a unique experience, the visit was a cultural shock for the star player.
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“Um, it was a unique experience. I went with no expectation, no view on what it’s supposed to be like,” he said. “I usually go to places where I at least have a view in my head. India, I’m thinking I’m going to be around palaces and royalty and gold – basically thought I was going to Dubai. Then when I landed there, I saw the culture and how they live and it was rough.”
The Golden State Warriors player said that India is a country that 20 year behind in terms of knowledge.
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“It’s a country that’s 20 years behind in terms of knowledge and experience. You see cows in the street, monkeys running around everywhere, hundreds of people on the side of the road, a million cars and no traffic violations,” he told the website. “Just a bunch of underprivileged people there and they want to learn how to play basket ball. That s – was really really dope to me.”
Durant called his visit to Taj Mahal an eye opener, marveling at how it was built 500 years ago and people still come to see it. He added that his expectations about the neighborhoods of Taj Mahal were all wrong.
He said: “Yeah. As I was driving up to the Taj Mahal, like I said, I thought that this would be holy ground, super protected, very very clean. And as I’m driving up, it’s like, s-, this used to remind me of some neighborhoods I would ride through as a kid. Mud in the middle of the street, houses were not finished but there were people living in them. No doors. No windows. The cows in the street, stray dogs and then, boom, Taj Mahal, one of the seven wonders of the world. It’s like holy s-, this was built 500 years ago and everyone comes here. It’s just an eye-opener.”