Life comes with a lot of gray areas. Sports are somewhat cleaner that way — teams, coaches, and players get judged on outcomes. There is a big scoreboard at the end of the stadium that says who won and who lost. No gray area there.
Athletes become driven by that outcome — Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, Kevin Garnett, Bill Russell, Jerry West, and many of the other top NBA players ever were known for their insane competitiveness and drive to win every game.
Kevin Durant is competitive, but he told Jeff Zillgitt of the USA Today he plays his best when he doesn’t worry about the outcome.
“I told myself before I left my room, I’m at my best if I don’t care if we win or lose,” Durant said. “It might be different for other players. But for me, I’m more free and aggressive, and it’s way more fun for me if I don’t care about the outcome. I know if I go out there and be who I am, the outcome will dictate itself.”