Ever since social media came into our lives, it's become easier than ever to express criticism. From analysts to online trolls, calling out athletes and putting them under scrutiny is extremely common.
Every once in a while, NBA players respond on either Twitter or Instagram and send shockwaves throughout the news and media. Kevin Durant, for one, has been part of several viral moments as his online shenanigans never seem to stop.
The Brooklyn Nets superstar has had several feuds with a variety of people, from famous TV personalities to random strangers on the internet looking to have fun at his expense.
Top feuds on Social media involving NBA players
The late, great Kobe Bryant was among the NBA athletes who witnessed the evolution of social media and its effects on NBA players.
He spoke about how it changed the league, as well as how players view the game. When Bryant was drafted into the NBA in 1996, players had to wait until the next morning to read the analysis in the newspaper. Now, however, NBA players get hundreds of messages and reactions within the blink of an eye.
Modern superstars like Stephen Curry have admitted to looking at Twitter at halftime to see what people have been saying about his performances. Here's a look at the top 5 social media feuds featuring NBA players.
5) Kevin Durant vs NBA Analyst Shannon Sharpe
In the latest of many social media incidents involving Kevin Durant, the Brooklyn Nets superstar went at Shannon Sharpe, calling the analyst out for faking a quote. Sharpe is an NFL Hall of Famer and a co-host, alongside Skip Bayless, on the famous sports debate show "Undisputed."
A fellow Twitter user with the handle @KuKhahilNBA told the TV star that the quote was from a fake Kevin Durant account, to which Sharpe responded.
The feud went back and forth until NBA analyst Shannon Sharpe put an end to the squabble and suggested if there were differences, the two of them could sort it out outside of social media and the public eye.
Kevin Durant responded by questioning why Shannon Sharpe wanted to talk in private after making false statements on live TV in the first place. Following the incident, Sharpe blocked Durant, leading to an even bigger news story.
The feud originally started after Durant claimed he is not motivated by winning championships but rather just wants to improve his own game. Sharpe disagreed with the former NBA MVP's statement, as did several others, which led to the exchange on Twitter.
Shannon Sharpe finally put an end to the feud when he said:
"I’m not gangsta, but I’m not going bck and forth with KD and lose my job either. I’ve had disagreement with other athletes, ppl b4 , we handled it like adults and moved on… “ADULTS.”"
#4 Kevin Durant vs NBA Analyst Chris Broussard
Kevin Durant's recent exchange with Shannon Sharpe isn't the first time he has called out an analyst publicly for making false statements.
Back in 2019, when the Golden State Warriors were on a playoff winning run without Kevin Durant, it raised a lot of questions about the former OKC Thunder superstar's value.
Stephen Curry and co. were running over teams without Durant, including sweeping the Portland Trail Blazers in the Western Conference Finals. NBA analyst Chris Broussard and several others claimed that if Golden State won the title without Kevin Durant, it would reduce the legitimacy of his two rings and Finals MVPs.
Chris Broussard joined Skip Bayless and Shannon Sharpe on the show "Undisputed" and spoke about how he has a "love-hate relationship" with Durant.
KD instantly responded saying that the whole monologue was a lie and Broussard doesn't even have his number.
Chris Broussard suggested not to take the literal meaning of "text" and said,
"IG DM, Twitter DM, text - it’s all the same thing nowadays, dude. Don’t act like I’m lying."
Eventually, Broussard responded by saying that he stood by what he said and claimed to have conversations to prove the interaction. However, the analyst did not reveal any proof and said the only reason he did not publicly release the conversations was out of respect for Durant.
#3 Joel Embiid vs Karl-Anthony Towns
Joel Embiid and Karl-Anthony Towns have gone back and forth several times in the NBA. The Cameroonian big man believes he is better than Towns and that he holds a psychological edge over the Minnesota Timberwolves star.
Whenever the Philadelphia 76ers and the Minnesota Timberwolves face-off, the two big men go at it. In a game in 2019, the two centers got into a physical altercation, which resulted in their ejection from the game and eventual suspension by the NBA.
The two big men continued their beef on Instagram. Joel Embiid posted a photo praising his teammates and mocking Karl-Anthony Towns' mother's reaction to the Sixers' star's ejection.
Karl-Anthony Towns was expected to respond and he did. He used the line "I was raised around lions" from Embiid's caption and mocked it in his own Instagram post.
Joel Embiid posted another picture on Instagram, bragging about how he blew through the Timberwolves and mocked Kart-Anthony Towns' 'KAT' nickname by calling him a cat.
He even personally commented on Towns' Instagram picture but the T-Wolves big man has apparently either hidden the comment or deleted it. However, Embiid captured a screenshot of the comment and posted it on Twitter, exposing Towns for deleting the interaction.
#2 Kevin Durant vs CJ McCollum
Kevin Durant attended NBA guard CJ McCollum's podcast in July 2018 and the two players spoke on a variety of topics. Things appeared to be going smoothly throughout the interview and all seemed well until CJ McCollum called KD's move to Golden State "soft."
Kevin Durant responded and called CJ a snake, claiming the Trail Blazers went behind his back and wrote something negative while pretending to be his friend on the podcast.
However, this particular feud didn't last long as CJ McCollum claimed there was no feud and it was just an analogy. The Portland star also said that his words could have been misinterpreted.
#1 Kevin Durant vs Kendrick Perkins
This beef is probably one of the most famous NBA feud in recent times. Kendrick Perkins and Kevin Durant were teammates on the OKC Thunder and apparently shared a brotherly relationship.
That was until Perkins called out Durant for joining a 73-9 Warriors team to chase rings. It started with Kendrick Perkins saying Russell Westbrook was the best Thunder player ever and the statement was instantly taken as a personal insult by KD.
This exploded into a back-and-forth Twitter battle between the two NBA players.
Boston Celtics' in-house announcer Marc D'Amico commented in support of KD, saying although Durant left and Westbrook stayed with the team longer, the seven-footer was still the better player.
NBA announcer Marc D'Amico responded by mocking Westbrook's lack of playoff achievements without Kevin Durant. Perkins then reminded Amico that KD lost in the 2nd round without Westbrook as well.
Kevin Durant eventually joined the online debate by ridiculing Perkins' contributions to the OKC Thunder's playoff runs.
Perkins hit back by bringing up what Durant has been criticized for ever since he left the OKC Thunder - joining a 73-9 Warriors team to win an NBA title, the same team the Thunder blew a 3-1 lead to.
Kevin Durant went on to criticize Kendrick Perkins' game, to which the analyst replied by saying that Durant "took the coward's way out."
Perkins issued an apology on ESPN's NBA show "The Jump" and it appears the two NBA players have either squashed their beef or are simply not on speaking terms.