LeBron James and Kevin Durant Feature in World’s Top Five Most Abused Athletes in the World

Published 07/09/2021, 3:30 PM EDT
May 25, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard LeBron James (23) reacts against the Phoenix Suns during the first half in game two of the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports


While athletes do receive a lot of love from their supporters, hate also does come along with it. Almost all renowned athletes in the world receive hate and abusive messages. This could be for something they said, something they did, or even maybe just to give hate for the sake of it. In basketball, LeBron James and Kevin Durant are two players who unarguably receive the most slander.

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LeBron James and Kevin Durant have been on top of their careers ever since entering the NBA. Moreover, they are the two best players in the game right now. Both are former league MVPs who have dominated the game of basketball.

May 25, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James prior to game two against the Phoenix Suns during the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

KD and James are in the limelight almost all the time. One mistake can land them in deep waters when it comes to the hate they receive.

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LeBron James and Kevin Durant among the most abused athletes

Being athletes of the stature that these two are, the hate they receive for the smallest of things is unreal. Both of them are among the Top 5 most abused athletes in the world.

Jun 1, 2021; Phoenix, Arizona, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James reacts against the Phoenix Suns in the second half during game five in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Phoenix Suns Arena. Mandatory Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

To take a guess, most hate may come from things that they have not done, and the remaining comes from their past decisions. For example, LeBron James, who tops the list of most abused athletes, receives a lot of hate from Jordan fans. He also receives hate for joining the Miami Heat back in 2010. In addition, he receives hate from Kobe fans as LeBron is now on the Lakers.

On the other hand, Kevin Durant receives slander for joining the Golden State Warriors to this day. While James does not respond to online slander, KD has been known to run his fingers sometimes. Both these players are generational athletes who do not deserve the hate they receive. LeBron James has received almost 123,000 hateful messages whereas Kevin Durant has received almost 25,000.

Jun 15, 2021; Brooklyn, New York, USA; Brooklyn Nets power forward Kevin Durant (7) reacts after being fouled late during the fourth quarter of game five of the second round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs against the Milwaukee Bucks at Barclays Center. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

It is not easy being an athlete and dealing with the hate on a daily basis. However, these two are not fazed by any of it.

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Even though they both receive the most hate in basketball, they do not let it impede their game. LeBron James, in his 18th year, is still considered as the best player in the league, while KD is not far behind. Both have achieved almost everything in the game of basketball.

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May 27, 2021; Los Angeles, California, USA; Los Angeles Lakers forward LeBron James (23) drives to the basket past Phoenix Suns forward Jae Crowder (99) during the fourth quarter of game three in the first round of the 2021 NBA Playoffs at Staples Center. Mandatory Credit: Robert Hanashiro-USA TODAY Sports TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY | Courtesy: Reuters

LeBron averaged 25 points a game at the age of 36! On the other hand, Kevin Durant is one of the best scorers in the history of the game. Both these athletes are the face of the NBA, and without them, basketball wouldn’t have been this big. Both are leading their respective organizations, and are at the top of their games.

They don’t let the hate get to them, but all athletes don’t operate in the same way. While LeBron and KD are immune to slander, it affects many athletes mentally.

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Anuj Talwalkar

142 articles

Anuj Talwalkar is an NBA writer at EssentiallySports. He is a student studying at NM College in Mumbai, aspiring to pursue sports management to follow his love for sports. Anuj started following the NBA last year, and he loves to combine his passion for writing with his understanding of basketball.

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