Kevin Durant Dedicates Season to Jeff Green

The more and more I see of Kevin Durant, the more I like the 23 year old superstar from Texas.

He spoke with nothing but admiration of the Celtics Jeff Green, who was diagnosed with a serious heart condition earlier in the season. Green has to have open heart surgery to repair an aortic aneurysm and his career is in jeopardy at this point, clearly.

That is what makes Durant's gesture appropriate.

"I dedicate the season to him," Durant said. " Jeff is a positive person. I learned so much from him. No matter what, he stays positive through the toughest times. He's still smiling and laughing and enjoying himself. It's tough to go through what he went through, and I pray for him every single day. But he knows that he's going to get back better and stronger. I can't wait for that day. I know he can't wait."

It's encouraging to see loyalty in a world where people are often forgotten when they move out of our lives. Jeff Green was traded last season for Kendrick Perkins, but clearly the bond that Durant and Green made supersedes any alliances formed through NBA teamships.

Durant is sure to have a great season, and the Thunder are off to a 12-2 start, looking like the clear favorites at this point in the Western Conference. They will have a tough road to the Finals, having to go through the Lakers, Mavericks, Grizzlies, and even now the Clippers, not to mention Portland and Denver. The West Coast is still the toughest. But the point I am making is that if Durant and the Thunder win a championship, Durant's dedication will seem even more special.

While Green won't receive a ring for his contributions to the Thunder, since he is no longer no the team, hsi impact on Durant may be the long standing triumph of his career, especially if he is forced into early retirement. Green may end up shortchanged in terms of longevity, but it is good to know his impact as a person exceeds any accolades he could ever put up as a player.

Note: This article was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Sign up here to start publishing your own sports content.

Follow Yahoo! Sports' NBA coverage on Twitter.
Updated Wednesday, Jan 18, 2012