Daily Sports Smile: Kevin Durant receives 2021 USA Basketball Male Athlete of the Year award

Jul 28, 2021; Saitama, Japan; USA player Kevin Durant (7) is seen as USA plays Iran during the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Summer Games at Saitama Super Arena. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports
Jaylon Thompson
USA TODAY Sports+

NBA superstar Kevin Durant received some new hardware this weekend. On Sunday, Durant was presented with the 2021 USA Basketball Male Athlete of Year award.

This is the third time Durant has won the award. He led the U.S. men's basketball team to a gold medal in the Tokyo Olympics last summer. Durant averaged 20.7 points and shot 52.9% from the field. FIBA also named Durant the Olympics MVP.

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USA Basketball made the announcement in December. Prior to the Brooklyn Nets matinee against the San Antonio Spurs, Gregg Popovich recognized Durant with the special honor.

The Nets shared the award presentation on their social media account. Durant embraced with Popovich before taking photos with the award.

“It's amazing to be honored in this way,” Durant said in a USA Basketball press release in December. “First off to represent your country and do it amongst the best athletes in the world, it's an honor. So many great athletes come through USA Basketball and the national teams in general in all sports, and so to be chosen as one of the top athletes is an honor. I'm very grateful for the opportunity and thankful that I received this award.”

In his USA Basketball career, Durant has appeared in 55 games. He is the U.S. men’s basketball all-time Olympic scoring leader and owns eight records. Durant has three Olympic gold medals and one FIBA World Championship.

This season, Durant is looking to lead the Nets to the NBA Finals. He leads the NBA in scoring as the Nets sit at 25-13 overall.