13-year-old Anthony Cupp of Warren, Michigan had saved up money by mowing his neighbor’s lawn in order to purchase a pair of KD’s. However, when walking to his stepfather’s house, Cupp was mugged, as someone flipped him to the ground and made off with his new kicks.
The straight-A student had to make his way home in the snow without any shoes. When his mom opened the door for him, Cupp could barely feel his feet because it was so cold.
The story made the local news, and it reached the Detroit Pistons, who decided to make Cupp an honorary ball boy for the squad’s game against Durant’s Oklahoma City Thunder. The Pistons also told the Thunder about what had happened, and so two hours before the game, Cupp got to hang out with his idol Durant, who came bearing gifts. A new pair of KD’s in Cupp’s size, a signed pair in Durant’s size, a KD-branded jacket and a backpack.
13-year old Anthony Cupp of Detroit had his KDs stolen right off his feet last week. Kevin surprised him tonight. pic.twitter.com/L90ide0aCI
— OKC THUNDER (@okcthunder) December 7, 2014
Here’s what Durant said of the encounter via NewsOK.com:
“He was real nervous,” Durant said. “Same thing I would have been if I met my favorite NBA player back then. I was just trying to make him feel as comfortable as possible.”
“We got such a big platform, man, and kids look up to us,” Durant said of the meeting. “To set a good example, we just have to show them that we’re human, too. They look at us as superheroes sometimes. So just to sit and talk to them, ask them how their day went, ask them where they’re from, make them feel like they are where they belong. We may seem untouchable, but we aren’t. That’s the biggest thing I wanted to show him. I’m a human just like you. I go through things just like you. Even though I play in the NBA, I’m here for you.”
The game was pretty interesting too, with the Thunder winning by a hair, 96-94. Durant also made sure he put on a show for his young fan, scoring a game-high 28 points on 10-of-19 shooting, his most efficient game this season.