The NBA Finals are a commercial saga, with enough all-encompassing rivalries and storylines to attract all kinds of fans. When Game 1 of Warriors vs. Cavaliers on Thursday, pegged as the third part an epic saga, dwindled into a semi-predictable 22-point drubbing by Golden State, the off-court rivalry of the ages emerged.
Kevin Durant, you might have heard, is sick of being No. 2. And while he may one-up LeBron on the court this series, he'll always be second to LeBron in the heart of basketball superfan, celebrity icon and eight-time Grammy winner, Rihanna.
RiRi's Instagram page, for five straight Finals in a row, has been a shrine to LeBron. She followed the King all the way back to Cleveland, and even the presence of J.R. Smith -- whom she is rumoured to have dated for a short, calamitous period -- hasn't deterred her fandom. In fact, when she congratulated LeBron last season, with the caption "Bae" under her Instagram post, some speculated without any proof that a possible affair may be brewing between the two. But as her shoutout to LeBron in "Bitch Better Have My Money" suggests, any relationship is more likely a case of mutual admiration between two high-powered ballers.
In Game 1, she let her allegiance show, as she tirelessly heckled Durant from courtside seats. And when Warriors fan tried to heckle back, she, of course, dabbed on them. You could hear her chanting "BRICK!" when he was on the free throw line, and later, when he pulled up for three. That's when the fireworks began. Durant nailed the triple and stared Rihanna down before trudging up the court.
Kevin Durant literally shot his shot for Rihanna pic.twitter.com/EX1PUaGXJM- justin lew block (@JBlock49) June 2, 2017
After the game, when a reporter asked him about the incident, Durant insisted, "I don't even remember that," and, after convening with Steph Curry (read: sharing a knowing glance and giggling), they both ended matters there, agreeing Durant shouldn't "get in that trap." The trap, in this instance, must refer to the reporter's line of questioning. Because what Durant's post-game conference won't reveal, his Twitter history will.
Somebody get @Rihanna to wish me a happy birthday and I'll be good..ya understand- Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) September 29, 2012
RT @MurdaMookez I jus wanted to bite rihanna butt cheek!!! Damn!!!!----->ME TOO lol- Kevin Durant (@KDTrey5) September 12, 2009
Shoot your shot, KD. Westbrook's not here to do it for you.
And as far as Durant's Warriors decisively slaying LeBron's Cavs goes, Rihanna put it succinctly before exiting the arena: "The King is still the King." Here's hoping she follows him to the Q, in case we're subjected to another on-court snoozefest.