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Oklahoma City Thunder forward Kevin Durant (35) drives during an NBA basketball game between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the Indiana Pacers in Oklahoma City, Sunday, Dec. 8, 2013. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

Oklahoma City Thunder star Kevin Durant regularly dishes out assists. Now he's dishing out food.

Durant is a partial owner in Kd's Southern Cuisine, a contemporary new restaurant that opened this week in the lower Bricktown section of Oklahoma City. The 10,000-square-foot facility located along the Bricktown Canal, features southern-style food staples such as barbecue pork ribs, fried catfish, candied yams and collard greens.

With a contemporary style and prices for every budget, the restaurant caters to a wide range of customers: professional basketball players with hefty wallets, families visiting the area for the weekend or the 20-something crowd looking for a hip bar on a Friday or Saturday evening.

Always a fan of eating, Durant said it was an easy decision to open Kd's. The restaurant, he hopes, will help him leave his mark on Bricktown away from the basketball court.

"I always want people to come in and enjoy themselves anywhere they go," Durant said in a statement provided by the Thunder to The Associated Press. "I like seeing people smile. Hopefully they come into my restaurant and it feels like a home, family type of feel and they can just enjoy themselves for a few hours."

Kd's is a part of the Hal Smith Restaurant Group that owns restaurants in several states. The goal for Kd's is to offer unique amenities that people may not see in Oklahoma coupled with Kevin Durant's name, said managing partner Joe Jungmann.

"This restaurant for me has a big feel of helping the city grow or growing with the city, and I think with Kevin Durant's name we have the vehicle to go, 'look at this'" he said.

A small stage in the main dining area will offer space for musicians to perform, while a private dining room in the back of the restaurant complete with bar and space for a DJ offers Durant and his fellow players space to relax after games without being hassled. In the warmer months, customers will be able to enjoy sunsets on the outdoor patio along the canal. Memorabilia including basketballs and shoes line one wall, and Jungmann hopes to get more.

The restaurant carries more than 800 bottles of wine in the two-story wine room. In fact, the first thing customers see when they enter is the walk-around bar featuring a complete specialty drink menu.

Kd's offers two menus: one featuring items ranging from under $10 to about $25. Another menu is for the professional basketball players or wannabes. Called the "Baller Menu," it features higher-priced menu items including a 14 oz. prime New York strip steak with two side dishes for $52.

Durant said the best part of the experience so far has been choosing the menu items and adding a different flair of food to the downtown area.

"I'm just excited to see people come together and enjoy a good meal with a nice ambiance and nice décor and just have fun," he said. "I want to see smiles and hopefully it's another venue that can provide that."

The restaurant was originally scheduled to open Monday, but its grand opening was pushed back to Wednesday because of the winter storm that hit late last week.

 

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