13-year-old eighth-grader Jayden Moore tells USA Today he was “hurt and confused” by Kevin Durant’s criticism after the 11-time NBA All-Star tweeted "This (expletive) stinks," to a move of his that was captured online.
The video was posted by sports Twitter handle, Overtime on Dec 19 who, conversely, went with the caption, “IDC THIS MOVE IS TUFF” followed by a sick emoji.
The internet seemed to side with the two-time champ with 19.4 million Twitter followers, as an outpouring of comments and shares followed, including that of current and former NBA stars, all pointing out young Moore’s very illegal basketball move.
"Horrible basketball!!! Smh," tweeted two-time All-Star Los Angeles Laker guard Isaiah Thomas. And Austin Daye, who won an NBA championship ring in 2014 with the San Antonio Spurs, also chimed in adding, "This is just Bad Hoops Period."
Now, with more than 176,000 likes and 18,000 retweets and counting, Jayden and his mom are speaking out.
"Like, what made him take time out of his day to say something negative instead of encouraging me or telling what really needs to be done and then texting me privately or something like that," Jayden said.
Jayden’s mother, Valeta, advised her son not to take it all personally, but also added, "I was going to (tweet), 'Why’s KD being so mean? It’s the week of Christmas.' "
Even Moore’s coach, Ken Novak, chimed in, saying he was amazed to learn Moore’s move had become the target of three NBA players.
"There’s almost an immaturity with them to take the time to even go on Twitter and look at that (video) and comment," Novak told USA TODAY Sports. "In fairness to them, I’m sure they’re trying to create what they see as better basketball, people sharing. And maybe they’re making a comment trying to say that. But they just got to realize who they’re saying it to."
However, the former league MVP says it’s all about learning the right way, responding “It’s about habits man,” when it was brought up that Moore was just a kid.
The ultimate background story to the move is that Jayden, who had seen the move on Instagram, bet his father $10 he could pull it off in a game. They also were winning by 50.
He’d also decided to take the high road, thanking people for the criticism and responding to Durant on Twitter that he should teach him a few moves.
“Thanks for the constructive criticism,” Jayden tweeted. “I’ve grown from my 6th grade year! Maybe we can work on some stuff together!! All love. Hopefully I can get to where you at one day! #keepgrinding.”
We’ll see if Durant takes him up on the offer.