Kevin Durant drops 36 and makes it look easy (VIDEO)

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Kevin Durant looks good this preseason. No, I mean really good. I know he always looks good but with Russell Westbrook out and coach Scott Brooks throwing lineups against the wall to see what sticks, a whole lot more has fallen on Durant.

And he’s up to it. He was 13-of-20 from the floor on his way to 36 points in 23 minutes against Denver Tuesday. He did it with drives attacking the rim, catch-and-shoot threes, backing his defender down into the paint, and even some Nowitzki-like one-legged fadeaways from the elbow.

It’s just preseason, but Durant has stepped up his game — there’s a new level of confidence, a smoothness to it. How far he can take this team remains to be seen, but he is the second best player on the face of the earth right now and he’s closing ground on No. 1. He looks like an MVP.