This article originally appeared on Sports Illustrated.
Game 1 of the NBA Finals went more or less as expected, as the Warriors blew the doors of the Cavs to take a 1–0 lead in the series. Aside from a flurry of first-half dunks, the highlight of the game occurred in the fourth quarter, when Kevin Durant drilled a three and stared down pop star/literal queen Rihanna.
Durant had been hearing it from RiRi all game, who was earlier shouting “Brick!” while KD shot some free throws. At the podium after the game, Durant was asked about the staredown, and basically lied to all of us when he claimed not to remember the incident.
I would possibly be inclined to believe KD if he didn’t have an extreme thirst for Rihanna that’s dated back many years. And of course, there are tweets to prove it.
Look, Kevin Durant is hardly the first man to be thirsty online for Rihanna. But don’t insult our intelligence by pretending you don’t remember staring down the woman you want to marry during an NBA Finals game. I’m sure deep down Durant was hurt that RiRi was cheering for the Cavs as opposed to the Dubs. (We all know how sensitive KD is about finishing second to LeBron—this one has to sting the most.)
I think KD really blew an opportunity to embrace his feelings here. What better time to profess your love for someone than at the podium after an incredible performance in Game 1 of the NBA Finals? Playing hard to get with Rihanna seems like a failing strategy, although fellow Finals participant J.R. Smith knows the perils of trying to shoot your shot with her.
Will Kevin Durant finally tell Rihanna how he feels (most likely through a statement on The Players’ Tribune) or will he continue to act like she’s no big deal? We may actually have a storyline worth following in the Finals after all.