Durant: 'I'm on the same level' as LeBron

In the declaration, he clarified his torch-passing comments from GQ: 'What I’m saying is when somebody passes the torch, they’re letting you in the room.'

Kahron Spearman

Kevin Durant, who came onto an already championship caliber team, continues to insert himself into a conversation with LeBron James, saying to the Mercury News' Mark Medina that he's 'on the same level' as James. 

In the course of the declaration, he clarified the torch-passing comment he made in GQ. 

I saw a lot of people took that out of context: What Im saying is when somebody passes the torch, theyre letting you in the room, Durant said. You got LeBron. You got [Dwyane Wade]. You got [Carmelo Anthony]. You got Paul Pierce. You got Larry Bird. You got Dr. J all in a room. Its my turn to be in there with them and enjoy being one of the best players in the world. It wasnt the fact that I took it from LeBron and hes gone now. Obviously, hes still around.

They have seen me play at the highest level and play against a guy who people say is continuously the best player ever. I feel like I proved myself and belong in that conversation.

Kevin Durant
Forward, Golden State Warriors

Accolades and accomplishments and legacy and all that stuff and how they mean to people, I cant talk on that, Durant said. But as far as basketball skills are concerned? Im on the same level. I feel like that moment was [LeBron] saying, Welcome.

A three-time champion and four-time league MVP, the 32-year-old James ranks among the leagues best on a per-game basis - in his 15th year - including third in points (28.4, ahead of Durant's 26.3), seventh in field-goal percentage (57%) second in assists (9.2).