FanDuel - WFBC

May 09, 2006

"I hate Kobe Bryant's rotten and derivative soul.": Yet, in a way, writer Sam Anderson is sad to see him leave the playoffs. Well, there's always next year.

posted by gspm to basketball at 10:42 AM - 79 comments

This writer sounds like a child with his first crush. Funny how love and hate are sometimes one and the same. However, I do think the line about Kobe's face looking like a weasel is most amusing.

posted by MW12 at 10:57 AM on May 09

Great read. Thanks, gspm.

posted by DrJohnEvans at 11:16 AM on May 09

i'll never sway from a chance to use my english degree. in a way, this is something worse than the intentional fallacy, where you might say "what pynchon is really trying to say here is ____." this writer claims to have a lot of insight into why kobe does what he does. from his choice to be a distributor to appease his critics (clearly phil's gameplan...bugmenot for latimes), to his teammate praising that was nothing more than posturing of his newfound leadership. every celebrity on every level engages in some degree of image management, none moreso than JORDAN HIMSELF. what bothers me the most is that the jordan mythology was imposed on kobe by the very same media that vilifies him for souring it by "plagiarizing" it. i posted about this on the lebron thread as well, but the ones doing the disservice here aren't the athletes, but the writers who make players like kobe into tragic heroes who can never really BE the next jordan. players in any evolution of an art, be it athletic or musical, borrow from those who came before. no one is reinventing the wheel. to spend all this time trying to force an elliptical block into a round hole just seems wasteful. can't we just appreciate the entertainment for what it is: a glimpse of a few-in-a-lifetime talent? maybe my standard for journalism is unrealistic. or maybe i should just say it's a slate article and take it as a little more tongue in cheek that i did on the first read.

posted by ninjavshippo at 11:57 AM on May 09

I read it as a rant more than a proper article. By the fourth paragraph, I was standing and applauding. I admit, I love hating Kobe too. (When Raja Bell was calling him a smarmy smug fuck who needed to be shown that the sun doesn't shine out of his ass, no one at my local pub disagreed.) Someone as worldly (at least by upbringing), talented and divinely anointed as he is should have way, way more imagination, both on the court and in his public moments off of it. (ninjavshippo, Kobe's taken great steps to assume Jordan's mantle. This wasn't just the media throwing him under the Air Bus.) Oh, and by the way, he didn't throw the second half of Game Seven. And he wasn't sending any "message" to his teammates. He just stopped trying. He gave up. There's a difference. And that difference is why he'll never be half the icon Jordan was. And I'm no huge fan of MJ, but he at least delivered on his hype.

posted by chicobangs at 11:59 AM on May 09

I love how the article highlights the need for preceived enemies on the part of fans. We need to dislike the opposing players for more than just wearing the opposing uniform. It makes the game more personal if kept playful as the author does. Growing up a Pistons fan through the Bad Boys years when our arch nemesises were the Celtics, Lakers and the afore mentioned Jordan-led Bulls, I found myself picking apart the players sometimes based on nothing more than looks. And boy, were those 80's Celtics an ugly bunch. Even Kareem who played Murdock in my childhood favorite movie Airplane was nothing more than a goon in googles. Keep the hate alive and did I mention the Celtics were damn ugly. I mean what the hell was that growing under Bird's nose anyhow?

posted by gradys_kitchen at 12:17 PM on May 09

Kobe is one of the most exciting players to watch in the game of basketball. I feel everybody hates greatness, u cant deny the fact that Kobe works the hardest, during the season and in the off-season to make his game better. The last 2 yrs alone he has gained bout 20-30 lbs of muscle. I feel all Kobe wants is someone who takes basketball as serious as he does on his team. There are only 2 other players in the league that have that killer instinct that kobe has and thats lebron and AI. Kobe did his best to help his team win, i feel smush parker didnt help too much since after the first 3 games he averaged about 5 points 3 assists and 4 fouls. Everyone that played in the serious had double digit pts but smush. U cant win a playoff series if ur point guard cant deliver. Of course he did help them win game 4 but that was jus steve nash fucking up at the wrong time. Kobe will though go down in history right under MJ as one of the most exciting players to watch, and he will also break many more records in the NBA. He's 27 and is a 10 yr veteran, think it's safe to say Kobe is jus getting into his prime.

posted by TK3pimp at 12:19 PM on May 09

The only question I have is, with Kobe out of the playoffs, will anyone ever again give two shits about Raja Bell or about anything Raja Bell has to say?

posted by dyams at 12:20 PM on May 09

Kobe is the best player on the planet. He has been villified by the media and haters no matter what he does. Let me just say as a baller and champion(3xs) and competitor I love him. He is the epitome of clutch. He made his players better or did Nash(0-9 games decided by 3 pts or less) make Kwame and the Lakers better too. Give it a break his character is being judged on lies and inuendo(media). Watch the player, the winner, the kid developing into a man. Actually better than Jordan at this stage. That is why you miss him. Because he is the real deal. No hype or marketing. My question ? Who is the next Kobe? Finally, based upon team play and leadership criteria. Let's give that MVP to Chauncey Billups,a great floor general, clutch, can play defense and leads the best TEAM in the NBA. Now we are talking basketball.

posted by Sputnik at 12:41 PM on May 09

will anyone ever again give two shits about Raja Bell or about anything Raja Bell has to say? That depends entirely on what he says and does from here on out. He is still playing. So, maybe. [Kobe] is the epitome of clutch. You can still say that with a straight face after his Game 7 disappearing act? I can think of three or four Suns (Bell included) who were more clutch than Kobe. And that's not even considering any of the other series. Kobe Bryant would be the best player on the planet in a game of one-n-one. No question. (Just like Stephon Marbury is the best playground baller in the NBA.) But the team thing seems to still be a bit beyond him, which is odd considering he's been in the league for almost a decade. It's odd to say, but given his talent and early success, he should be even better than he is. A lot better.

posted by chicobangs at 12:48 PM on May 09

Great article. Loved it. I also don't like Kobe, but I respect his talent and commitment - however, it seems increasingly more clear that this talent and commitment are to himself and his legacy. He bitched out of game 7 - any Laker fan that thinks otherwise is lacking any shred of credibility, objectivness or sanity. Great read on the Nader letter, too. Who knew he was a Kings fan? (He was right, too.)

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 12:58 PM on May 09

I dont see why most people are Kobe haters. He is the best player by far in the world. He carried that Laker team on his shoulders. He is an inside presence away from winning it all. Imagine this Kobe to KG on the low post. Perfect place for KG to go where he doesnt have to be the go to guy. And on the MVP, Kobe got ripped off. Everybody voted on who they liked better. If it is on basketball along then there shouldnt of been anybody else in the race. Peace im out

posted by baseballgreat at 01:04 PM on May 09

Sweet article. I agree with most everything said. Kobe seems so contrived, so phony. I loved when he won all-star MVP in Philly (his "hometown") and got a nice round of boos. I wish Shaq could win one without him, but that's not looking very likely at this point.

posted by Bill Lumbergh at 01:05 PM on May 09

I don't care about Kobe Bryant one way or the other, but I love the phrase "rotten and derivative soul".

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:07 PM on May 09

The only question I have is, with Kobe out of the playoffs, will anyone ever again give two shits about Raja Bell or about anything Raja Bell has to say? Kinda depends on who he clotheslines in the next round. I vote for My Favorite Martian: Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

posted by wfrazerjr at 01:28 PM on May 09

I feel everybody hates greatness I hate Kobe for his freedom. But seriously, I lump Kobe in the same category as Duncan: players I hate for no defensible reason. Or rather, I lumped him in that category until this season. The game 7 disappearing act and sitting out the 4th quarter of that Mavs game are tough to swallow. When the situation around the rape charges is included, it becomes difficult to put up a good defense of the guy, no matter how great a player he is.

posted by mullacc at 01:29 PM on May 09

Kobe may be in the top 2 in the NBA, but he's certainly not the best on the planet, unless that planet is Lakerworld. His contrived new personality is sickening, so he should just stick with being Kobe instead of "Media-Friendly Bryant"! He wants to be better than Jordan, but he has to "become Jordan" then surpass him. that will not happen due to 2 things; his dubious personality and the team that he plays with.

posted by bkdet at 01:31 PM on May 09

He is an inside presence away from winning it all. Hmmmm. I'm sorry, am I taking crazy pills? For real? Seriously, anyone out there in Lakerland have an answer to this defense? Really - Wow this forest has a shitload of trees in it! I never noticed before! (Pssst - he had a pretty decent inside presence not too long ago that by most accounts he ran out of town. Pass it on.)

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 01:38 PM on May 09

I dont see why most people are Kobe haters. He is the best player by far in the world. He carried that Laker team on his shoulders. He is an inside presence away from winning it all. Imagine this Kobe to KG on the low post. Perfect place for KG to go where he doesnt have to be the go to guy. A) A big, big part of sports fandom is being able to irrationally hate the other guy without there being any real-world consequences. Kobe Bryant's eminently hatable, and getting my hate on for him provides the outlet that (maybe) keeps me from doing a machete rampage through my office. B) If the Wolves were to fuck up and somehow allow KG to go to the Lakers, you would see that machete rampage.

posted by cobra! at 01:40 PM on May 09

Maybe next year kobe if you stay out of trouble.

posted by T$PORT4lawschool at 01:51 PM on May 09

Kobe minus Shaq equals round one exit.

posted by mustang71 at 02:01 PM on May 09

35 points a game, stalwart defender, Perennial allstar, 3 rings. MVP of the Allstar game. Carried an admittedly young and underdevelopoed Laker to team to the playoffs, no one expected that. 81 points in one game. Transformed his game in the playoffs, so that the NBA nation could have a 7 game series, Lakers a shot away from moving on and becoming only the 6th #7th seed to ever win the first round. And basketball wise he is must see TV. As a Laker fan, there are not too many trees, just too many haters. Hate clouds your judgement more than the crazy pills or the weed. Stop smokin and start thinkin, clearly that is. Or post something else when you come down. But while you are up there, ask the martians if Kobe is the best player on the planet. By the way if Shaq does not win anything other than a couple rounds in the playoffs. The Buss(not Kobe) that blew him out of town, saved those millions and spared the Laker fans the annoyance of the big Moody(Shaq) and the big injured most of the season. "I will get healed on company time because I got hurt on company time." Will be once again regarded not only as one the best and one of the winningest owners ever. But also one with tremedous savvy and vision. Yes I love Kobe the basketballer. I don't know the man, do you?

posted by Sputnik at 02:03 PM on May 09

Kobe Kobe Kobe... Talented, yes; ooooohhh my word, if you put that talent into the hands of nearly any of the other MVP candidates the NBA would be a much different place. Now, the reason that Kobe is not the MVP is exactly the reason that Anderson is focusing on. Kobe is not a team player. Kobe had plenty of teammates that were amazing. but they are gone now, because Kobe cannot play team basketball. I dare say that this year's playoffs may have been a turning point for Kobe; maybe we will see a diiferent Bryant in subsequent years. As for this year... how valuable is a 50 point shooter when you are still losing almost half your games? I have never once in my life defended Steve Nash as the MVP (read my past posts if you don't believe me), but the reason that he won it is because he turned two or three virtual nothings into amazing players who proved time and time to work together as overachieving WINNERS. 54 times they proved it over the course of the season. Kobe bryant also had little to work with over the course of the season, and as it turned out in game seven, he was destined to fail.

posted by everett at 02:12 PM on May 09

(Lay off the personal attacks, Sputnik. Keep it about basketball.) 35 points a game, stalwart defender, Perennial allstar, 3 rings. MVP of the Allstar game. 81 points against the Craptors. 62 in another game in just three quarters. Right on. All personal statistics, of which he has always been (rightly) proud. Yes, he gets props for the Lakers making the playoffs, but Smush Parker and Kwame Brown (who is himself another link to MJ! och!) stepped up too. They were full value for making the playoffs. What's more, they should have beaten the Suns. Lakers a shot away from moving on They lost Game 7 by 31 points. (If he got fouled from downtown Tucson, that might be a 31-point shot. Otherwise, no dice.) In Games 5 and 6, the series wasn't lost. Shaq may be hurt and old at this point, but I haven't heard anyone on or around the Heat question his attitude, his work ethic, or his commitment to the franchise or the community this year, and he's served as a solid mentor to Dwayne Wade, just like he mentored Kobe once upon a time.

posted by chicobangs at 02:19 PM on May 09

Look Sputnik this can't be clearer; if Kobe is an inside presence away from winning it all, and he helped orchestrate the exit of the greatest inside presence of all-time two years ago, then where is this greatness that I'm disrespecting? But more importantly, where is the commitment to team, city and winning? No one is arguing his talent. Some of us, and the article, are interested in his motivation - and I think his actions have been very telling in that regard. I responded to your suggestion that he was an inside presence away from winning it all - which I assume you meant would cement his greatness, perhaps in the eyes of all (haters included) - and my response was that you are right. He needs an inside presence to win. Of course, he had that presence and issued an ultimatum to ownership - Him or me. It wasn't Buss and it wasn't Shaq. This is well known. It is not refuted. So what you presented as a testament to his competitive nature and greatness, I percieve as an admition of his selfishness and agenda. Sorry - that's a lot of punctuation and correct grammar. I know I'm letting my namesake down. I'll try harder. On Mars. I agree - Kobe is the best player on the planet. Hands down. I think he'll have some competition in a few years from Lebron, but right now, it's Kobe. It's too bad that doesn't make him the MVP, a good teammate, a smart man, or a second round player. And he totally mailed it in two minutes into the second half of game 7. Admit it. He did.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 02:21 PM on May 09

Lakers a shot away from moving on If the "what if" scenarios are up for discussion then it might be noted that the Suns were also a couple of blown calls (ie game 4) away from winning the series 4 games to 2.

posted by gspm at 02:43 PM on May 09

As a long time Laker fan, I direct my hate to management that allowed a spoiled, egocentric Kobe to destroy the team. He basically single handedly ran the most dominant inside player, and best coach out of town. Sure Jackson came back for a big paycheck but Kobe is still the uncoachable brat Jackson claimed he was. Kobe has managed to turn the Lakers into the Kobe Bryant Show, which is more important to him than championship basketball. The Lakers fans are suffering. I would take Magic Johnson in his prime anyday over Kobe, simply based on the way he made the other players around him better, Kobe with a good inside man has the same ability but lacks interest in a winning team. It's definetly all about Kobe and despite his undeniable talent, he is so easy to hate, even for a Laker fan.

posted by Atheist at 02:48 PM on May 09

First, I was not the one who said he is an inside presence away, that was someone else. Okay, Buss signs the checks. An aging Shaq tell gives you an ultimatum, tells you he wants more money during a preseason game in front of all the team(great for chemistry) and fans. And you are defending him. The only player that stayed with Jordan was Pippin and Rodman. Neither of those players wanted to shoot. Jordan averaged 30+ points in every game he ever played. Phil Jackson had to make him pass to the shooting guards at least he had them and he did begrudgingly. Tim thomas hits a three pointer at the buzzer, he misses that shot Laker win 4-2. It is interesting how Kwame and Smush got better on their own, but Steve Nash made the more talented Diaw etc. better. Kobe's assist were up and would have been higher had they made shots. No one disputes Chauncey Billups. I guess you don't hate him. Yes, he mailed in the 4th quarter from Tucson as he watched his teamates settle for just making it to the playoffs. Weedy your are great, this time I did not mean to be personal (funny maybe) His greatness is already cemented. By the way, Shaq stills has to win in order for the trade to have been bad for the Lakers. By the way ask Penny Hardaway and Orlando how great a teammate Shaq was. It is easy to love the giant. I am going with the heart. Oh it was not a blown call, even Nash said he slipped(poor smush gets no credit) it was a game winning shot Kobe,Kobe,Kobe. Magic I guess he was surrounded by mediocre talent also. Hate is not good. Peace. A little too long.

posted by Sputnik at 03:02 PM on May 09

Let me preface this by saying I think Kobe mailed it in and used an awful platform in game seven of the playoffs to make a statement like this. BUT: Kobe gets screwed either way. If he shoots too much, he's an egotistical ballhog. If he doesn't shoot enough, he's mailing it in. I feel dirty defending the guy because I really don't like his work ethic or his worth as a human being but he gets it a lot rougher than he deserves sometimes.

posted by HATER 187 at 03:18 PM on May 09

Let's look at a little recent history. For most of the season everyone claimed that Kobe had to score 35 ppg to carry the team of no-talent losers. Then in the playoffs all of a sudden Kobe starts playing team ball b/c his hardworking teammates need to be involved for the Lakers to win? As the Lakers exit early it's "Kobe just wasn't surrounded by enough talent - he can't do it all". Cut the crap and look at the facts. The Laker team lost, and the individual Kobe lost. Hallelujah!

posted by whitedog65 at 03:18 PM on May 09

Kobe Bryant has done nothing in his career to be that hated.He is and he will end up one of the great's of all time.It is obvious why some people write and hate Kobe the way they do.

posted by SharpShooter at 03:29 PM on May 09

I read some of the commments posted and just laugh. To all the Kobe haters out there he is the best player on the planet. The Lakers are a mediocre team but that is not his fault, how about finding fault in a guy who is asking for $30 million per year but cannot put in a full season. And yes he did get robbed in the MVP vote(4th place are u kidding me).Dirk has Jason Terry, Stackhouse(not great but alot better than Kobe usually has)Van Horn, Harris, come on. This was a two man race Lebron is putting up Big O type numbers and Kobe was phenomenal at times. Steve Nash played without key ingredients but with that style offense u often gets lots of open shots on penetration, all u have to do is be able to make open shots and he gets assist and looks like he improved his teammates.Alot of haters have come out since the incident in colorado, why don't they just come out and say they are pissed off he slept with a white girl. Isn't it funny how they try to use the black girls past in North Carolina but did everything they could to not use the girls past in Colorado.$5 million dollars for one night with an NBA superstar pretty good payout i would say.People always say he has 3 rings because of Shaq why don't they tell it like it is and say they have 3 rings because of each other and also because of Horace Grant. Rick Fox, Derek Fisher, Glen Rice, Robert Horry and so on. If u don't like the guy fine that is cool, but don't try to label him selfish because alot of people seem to forget that Jordan had many scuffles with teammates at different times in his career and Phil Jackson had to force him to pass to his teammates. So get your facts straight before u try and label this guy as selfish and arrogant, they all are even Jordan Magic and Bird were. Peace

posted by sprman92 at 03:30 PM on May 09

If Tim Thomas misses that trey at the end of the fourth quarter in game six, this whole discussion would be moot. The Lakers didn't stand a chance in Game Seven in Phoenix, regardless of what Kobe did. The Suns are a better team. Anyway, the NBA needs players like Kobe. How interesting would pro ball if everybody had the personality of Tim Duncan?

posted by Scott Carefoot at 03:30 PM on May 09

Cut the crap and look at the facts. Ok, lets. - Phil failed to adjust to the PHX S/Rs until it was too late. They should have been going under every screen and forcing Nash to jack up 3s or pass to a wing spot instead of perpetually switching and allowing PHX's limited big guys to be matched up on smush or sasha. One of PJ's few tactical mistakes, but it was the elephant in the room no one on the LA coaching staff adequately addressed. - Odom is their only decent post player and feeding the post to the likes of Kwame and Walton with regularity (something they haven't done all year) only worked with the element of surprise. Once PHX figured out how to double Lamar in the post, the lakers simply didn't have enough experience with entry passes. the result was lots of turnovers, which fed the PHX fast break. - Walton and Smush are not NBA starters. Smush is at best a scoring punch off the bench and walton should be the facilitator for the second unit. I still believe the lakers overachieved and that their postseason success was more mirage than reality. Then in the playoffs all of a sudden Kobe starts playing team ball b/c his hardworking teammates need to be involved for the Lakers to win? Wrong. The suns D is so lacking that it makes anyone look good for a while. The lakers were never meant to even approach the playoffs. My only hopes as the season closes are that: 1) lamar can be as consistent as he has been in the last few months from now on, 2) kwame learns a few more boom boom moves to compliment his defense and that he and chris mihm turn into a decent big-man combo, 3) the lakers find a veteran point guard in the offseason. still not enough for a championship, but i think that would improve the team another 5 wins or so until Brian Grant's ridiculous contract comes off the books. as for Kobe, i agree with Hater's assessment that he's damned if he does and damned if he doesn't. that said, in the second half he did look like he had given up. it would be the first time i've seen him do that. it was sad to watch.

posted by ninjavshippo at 03:31 PM on May 09

Kobe gets screwed either way. If he shoots too much, he's an egotistical ballhog. If he doesn't shoot enough, he's mailing it in. One thing the Great Jordan understood on a fundamental level was that it is always better to be damned for something you've done than for something you didn't do. If instead of moping around the court in the second half of Game 7 he instead shot 3-for-30 from the field, he could at least step up at the press conference and shrug and say, "Well, I tried." (And please, put the race card away. That has nothing to do with this discussion.) One last thing: the article was about how Sam Anderson loves to hate Kobe. Trying to convince him (or me, or anyone else) that those feelings are irrational is misguided. There are many reasons to admire Kobe Bryant's achievements. There are many (more, especially for non-Laker fans) reasons to dislike him. I'm pretty sure he doesn't care either way, and my NBA fandom is tenuous at best, so let Sam Anderson (and me, and everyone else) have our fun.

posted by chicobangs at 03:42 PM on May 09

setting aside the issues surrounding the greatness (or lack thereof) of kobe bryant-unless i'm mistaken, the miami heat made the eastern conference finals last year and were only derailed (for good) when dewayne wade went down with an injury AND the heat are currently in the second round of the playoffs. since the lakers weren't in the playoffs last year and lost a 3-1 series lead to torch the series, it seems pretty clear who came out ahead on the shaq trade.

posted by ksb122 at 03:46 PM on May 09

For the record it wasn't just Shaq that Kobe had problems with. The Lakers basically disbanded the whole team, coaching staff and all. They made a team revolve around a player. Yes, the Heat made a great trade. Every team Shaq has played on has been in contention because of him. He is a dominant player that makes a team better. Kobe is a great player that seems to destroy team chemistry. If I were coaching the Lakers it would have been Kobe I would have traded, kept the majority of my team in tact and looked for another outstanding player cause Kobe would have been worth a fortune in a trade.

posted by Atheist at 04:09 PM on May 09

Sputnik wrote: By the way, Shaq stills [sic] has to win in order for the trade to have been bad for the Lakers. That is a pretty dubious criterion by which to judge the trade. I would say look at where the Lakers would be with and without Shaq. With Shaq, the Lakers probably, at a minimum, make the finals last year or this year -- but likely make it to the conference finals both years. Without him, they miss the playoffs last year and get bounced in the first round this year. In the meantime, Shaq's Heat lost in the conference finals last year (and may have won if not for an injury to Wade) and are favorites to have a repeat date with the Pistons in the conference finals this year. There may be a question of whether the trade was a good one in the long-term (if the Lakers could take some of the Shaq salary savings and build up a decent team around Kobe in the coming years). But in the short term, Lakers lose big time and it's not even close. sprman92 wrote: Alot of haters have come out since the incident in colorado, why don't they just come out and say they are pissed off he slept with a white girl. Isn't it funny how they try to use the black girls past in North Carolina but did everything they could to not use the girls past in Colorado. I'm not sure who "they" is, but there was a lot of speculation and malicious talk regarding the woman Kobe was involved with in Colorado. I recall reading allegations that she was mentally unstable and promiscuous, hearing details from the courtroom that there were multiple semen donors when she was given the rape kit, etc. Kobe's legal team did not shy away from trying to smear the woman in Colorado, including introducing or playing up those salacious details and IIRC stating her name in open court (when they were under orders not to and they knew it would get out).

posted by holden at 04:16 PM on May 09

81 points against the Craptors. Completely beside the point of this heated debate, but it should be pointed out that these same "Craptors" held Kobe to a season low 11 points in an earlier game this season. So cut them a LITTLE slack for getting torched.

posted by grum@work at 04:25 PM on May 09

Kobe is a great player that seems to destroy team chemistry. It's funny, but I don't remember people complaining about Kobe's "chemistry" during their back-to-back-to-back run. It seems that "chemistry" is a product of winning, and not the other way 'round. (for other references, see Pierzynski, A.J.) Alot of haters have come out since the incident in colorado, why don't they just come out and say they are pissed off he slept with a white girl. Black or white, that girl he slept with wasn't his wife. That, in and of itself, might be a reason that some people don't like Kobe.

posted by grum@work at 04:35 PM on May 09

I was going to leave the Craptors comment alone but since you brought it back, Grum, I think what really takes away from the 81 point performance is the number of people who have put up those kinds of numbers against that team. I mean, it's easy to go 75+ against the Craptors, right? That's why so many people have done it... Oh wait, no they haven't.

posted by MW12 at 04:41 PM on May 09

The Tim Thomas make moot maker has been brought up and my allusion to game 4 was: 1. the end of regulation, final play, 0.7 seconds left, Phoenix player going for the alley oop (or something like it) and gets held or yanked as he made his cut resulting in him not getting to the ball cleanly and no decent shot and we head to OT. these things happen, but that's kind of a hometown call, put the whistles in the pockets, anything goes sort of moment. 2. the end of OT, it was suggested that Nash and whats his face were both calling timeouts, none granted, jump ball, Kobe hits the game winner. if either of those calls go Phoenix's way then potentially they win 4-2. talking what if scenarios are wholly fallacious so I'm just trotting out an opposing fallacious scenario to consider. And I didn't come up with all that, Nash said "Guys, calm down. We're only up 4-2 and we've got another game to go" so the team was feeling like the game was stolen to some extent. (though an interesting edit of the same article frames Nash's comment as referring to the Laker heroics, rather than any ref type stealing).

posted by gspm at 04:54 PM on May 09

Oh wait, no they haven't. True, but how many teams have a system or a coach that would allow one player to go off for that many points? He got hot, he had a great game, but as grum pointed out, his season low was 11 and against the Raptors. How many superstars would get held to only 11 points against the Craptors!?!? Just sayin'.

posted by gspm at 04:57 PM on May 09

Kobe is a selfish player and it has been proven that he can't win with Shaq. Or is it just that the Lakers need a center to win? Chamberlain, Kareem, Shaq You get the picture. How good is the Zen Master himself? Phil has been surrounded by MJ and Pippen, and Kobe and Shaq. People wonder why hes never lost in the first round. There's your answer.

posted by danfeldman413 at 05:12 PM on May 09

Don't bring Phil Jackson into this you need a coach to keep things in order that players respect....Phil is one of the top 3 best coaches ever after Red Aourbech(i know thats spelled wrong) and above Hubie Brown or Lenny Wilkins, doesn't matter hes a living legend in coaching and he taught Michael Jordan how to harness his skills to make everyone better I mean come on you can overlook most coaches but not Phil Jackson

posted by gmactothemax91 at 05:26 PM on May 09

Kobe is a selfish player and it has been proven that he can't win with Shaq. I'm really getting sick of people knocking on superstars because they can't win the championship. Last time I checked it was a team game with five players, not one, on the court at one time. If a player does not have a team around him, his chances for winning are drastically reduced. In Kobe's case, he won titles when he had a quality supporting cast that did happen to include Shaq. When that cast left, so did the Laker's dominance. Other examples include the much talked about LeBron James. He hasn't come up big yet (and I doubt he will this year) but as soon as he gets a legit supporting cast like Jordan or Bryant had when they won, then the Cavs will have a very good chance at the title.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 05:51 PM on May 09

Right on YYM. I'll gladly put KB in a group of losers like A-Rod, Dan Marino, and Peyton Manning any day.

posted by ninjavshippo at 05:58 PM on May 09

yes Kobe was married, but are u telling me that we live in a society where everyone believes in fidelity. I wonder why the divorce rate is over 50% in this country then. And for those people that don't like him i bet they all have friends that have cheated on their spouses in one situation or another, so do they dislike them now, year right we live in a society full of hypocrites

posted by sprman92 at 06:24 PM on May 09

yes Kobe's defense team did mention her name in court which was wrong, but did anyone stop to think why she didn't want a public trial. Her reputation would have been shredded, her sexual promiscuity would have been revealed, along with her attempted suicide and other mental problems. I thought rape was rape, not i will shut my mouth and take $5million and feel better about myself. i thought a person that was truly raped no amount of money would make them forget what happened to them and no amount of justice would make them feel better.I guess only in Colorado where u are innocent until proven guilty unless your name is Kobe Bryant

posted by sprman92 at 06:30 PM on May 09

Sputnik: "Kobe is the best player on the planet. He has been villified by the media and haters no matter what he does. " True, True! You are completely right Sputnik. baseballgreat : "I dont see why most people are Kobe haters. He is the best player by far in the world. He carried that Laker team on his shoulders. He is an inside presence away from winning it all. Imagine this Kobe to KG on the low post. Perfect place for KG to go where he doesnt have to be the go to guy." That is what I've been waiting for. KG going to the LAKERS, that would be just unbelievable. I really do think they might just be able to get KG. baseballgreat : "And on the MVP, Kobe got ripped off. Everybody voted on who they liked better. " You are absolutely correct. Kobe did get ripped off. mustang71: "Kobe minus Shaq equals round one exit." Correction, Shaq minus Kobe equals no championships. In my mind Kobe is better than Jordan, why wont anyone just admit it?

posted by STUNNER at 06:53 PM on May 09

Maybe because Bryant is not better than Jordan and your mind is just really messed up? He has been villified by the media and haters no matter what he does. Bitching about this and that plus having rape charges against you doesn't exactly help your cause. You are absolutely correct. Kobe did get ripped off. No Correction, Shaq minus Kobe equals no championships. Read my post above.

posted by Ying Yang Mafia at 07:00 PM on May 09

these threads are starting to become bonds-lite-ish. if i knew what was good for me, i'd just step away. then again, if i knew what was good for me, i wouldn't eat frozen burritos before bed.

posted by ninjavshippo at 07:12 PM on May 09

i wouldn't eat frozen burritos before bed. I find it helps to warm them up first.

posted by Bill Lumbergh at 07:22 PM on May 09

Whats the deal with the caps.

posted by everett at 07:28 PM on May 09

but are u telling me that we live in a society where everyone believes in fidelity. No, I'm not. I'm telling you that SOME people might believe in fidelity, and that might be part of the reason that Kobe has some "haters". And for those people that don't like him i bet they all have friends that have cheated on their spouses in one situation or another, so do they dislike them now, year right we live in a society full of hypocrites I have a co-worker that I know committed adultery, and I can say that I do look upon him with much less respect than I did before I found out. I still think that Kobe Bryant is a fantastic player and easily one of the 5 best in the NBA right now. I also think he's a bit of a dirtbag for cheating on his wife. The two thoughts can exist at the same time. Whats the deal with the caps. I think the Capitals are going to do well next year with Alexander Semin coming over and playing with Ovechkin.

posted by grum@work at 08:08 PM on May 09

Damn , it's JUST a game . I love the game , but there's no psychopathic emotions surging within me to take such a pathetic stand . I love the Pistons , I like Lebron James and hope his rookie cards do as well as Jordans so I can cash in , but the rest of the addictive mindset towards the game , I can't fathom . Sounds like dude needs some serious psychological help so that he will realize that it's JUST A FRIGGING GAME .

posted by alvinthefirst at 08:33 PM on May 09

"Kobe minus Shaq equals round one exit." Yeesssss! right on the money. "let me just say as a baller and champion(3xs) and competitor I love him. " If he had had Shaq they could have gone for as many as 5. Who in their right mind would get rid of (a younger) Shaq?

posted by Goyoucolts at 08:48 PM on May 09

So do u think Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan are scumbags, they cheated on their wives, why don't we villify them.

posted by sprman92 at 09:13 PM on May 09

these threads are starting to become bonds-lite-ish No joke. I was fearing a hornet's nest would be stirred with that column and I debated posting it (not to say that somebody else wouldn't have posted it here). I liked reading it though. Add Kobe to the FPP honeypot file.

posted by gspm at 09:14 PM on May 09

Ying Yang Mafia: "Maybe because Bryant is not better than Jordan and your mind is just really messed up?" Nah, my mind is perfectly fine. But maybe your mind is a little messed up. In reality, Kobe is better than Jordan, one day you will admit it, sooner or later. Ying Yang Mafia: "Bitching about this and that plus having rape charges against you doesn't exactly help your cause." Seriously, is your mind messed up? Anyone could be charged with rape. Was he convicted of rape? No! It was consensual. Get over it. Ying Yang Mafia: "Correction, Shaq minus Kobe equals no championships. Read my post above." I read it, but I know that Shaq wont win another championship. Getting carreer lows this season, his career is pretty much over.

posted by STUNNER at 09:16 PM on May 09

So do u think Magic Johnson and Michael Jordan are scumbags, they cheated on their wives, why don't we villify them. I do think they are dirtbags for cheating on their wives. I also think they are two of the greatest players to play the game and I appreciate their skill on the basketball court. See, it's really not that hard to do. Why can't you accept that personal perception and talent recognition can be separate thought processes? Anyone could be charged with rape. No, I don't think that is true at all, and that kind of hyperbole is an insult to women who have been raped. It suggests that any woman makes that suggestion could be lying.

posted by grum@work at 09:40 PM on May 09

grum@work I was in no way trying to insult women. All I said was the truth, anyone can be charged with rape. "No, I don't think that is true at all, and that kind of hyperbole is an insult to women who have been raped. It suggests that any woman makes that suggestion could be lying." How is that not true? From the way you took my comment, I could take what you said the wrong way too. You kinda suggest that all women who press charges for rape were raped. And another thing, not only women can be raped.

posted by STUNNER at 09:50 PM on May 09

"No money has been paid to this woman. She has agreed that this statement will not be used against me in the civil case...I recognize now that she did not and does not view this incident the same way I did...I now understand how she feels that she did not consent to this encounter." I think a lot of people turned hard against Kobe with the triple whammy of the rape charge, the fracas with Shaq, and the completely stupid feud with Karl Malone that made Kobe look like a total idiot. Add that to the natural animosity provoked by his talent, success and Lakerhood and you've got the perfect recipe for a widely despised ballplayer. Kobe is, of course, one of the most talented scorers ever to play the game. That doesn't automatically make him the mythic "great player" that guys like Jordan, Magic and Bird were.

posted by Venicemenace at 10:08 PM on May 09

I just read the article- not the comments. Kobe has made some mistakes, however, the guy is a great player and still a good role model. I think there are a plethora of other sports stars to bag on first. Whoever that loser is who wrote that article needs to get another life.

posted by caselaw at 10:33 PM on May 09

case, I think he was really trying to say that he likes Kobe in spite of himself. just my two cents.

posted by everett at 01:54 AM on May 10

Stunner - you may have a few lucid points in your comments, but I couldn't get by "Kobe is better than Jordan". I'm afraid your going to have to, you know, actually back that up with an argument, in order to not be considered a complete lunatic. Because, I gotta go with "No he fucking isn't" at this stage in the game.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 07:51 AM on May 10

Kobe is on the level of Bird or Johnson or Malone so far in my humble opinon. Jordan ranks up there as one of the two most dominante players to ever play the game. Jordan could seemingly will the fucking ball into the basket and was so fundamentally sound on both ends of the ball he was pants shittingly scary. Don't get me wrong Bryant is talented, arguably the most talented player in the league right now, but better than Jordan, thats just crazy shit you say to get a rise out of people.

posted by HATER 187 at 08:06 AM on May 10

Stunner, stop with the 'bold'. We can see your words, there's no need.

posted by justgary at 09:05 AM on May 10

All I said was the truth, anyone can be charged with rape. Well then, by that suggestion, anyone could be charged with any crime of any kind. To suggest that rape charges are made based on accusations only is silly. There usually has to be some evidence of sexual conduct, force or intimidation. Whether it was rape or not, there has to be more than just a statement. This is why not "anyone" can be charged with rape.

posted by grum@work at 09:25 AM on May 10

Kobe will go down as one of the best players ever behind Jordan. At his age Kobe is better than Jordan. I know that Kobe had Shaq but would u be able to play with somebody that u cant get along with. I couldnt. And by trading him they freed up cap room to eventually go after KG. Dont defend Nash cause his teammates can make shoots. Kwame is the worst post player in the league. If he could of made 50% of his shoots in game 7 then they all wouldnt of given up.

posted by baseballgreat at 04:51 PM on May 10

WeedyMcSmokey: "Stunner - you may have a few lucid points in your comments, but I couldn't get by "Kobe is better than Jordan". " Me bringing this up to people that are way older than me(no offense), must seem ignorant or stupid huh? Being a sort of newbie, I really do think that Kobe is better than Jordan. baseballgreat: "At his age Kobe is better than Jordan. " Thanks for saying so. At 27 Kobe is already a ten year veteran and has just hit his prime, and already has 3 Championships. At 27 Jordan didnt have any of that. Kobe is a better outside shooter than Jordan, and he can actually play defense too. Sure everyone will probably bring up stats to defend Jordan as the "Best Player Ever", but his career is over and Kobe's career isnt, so it wouldnt be fair to compare both players yet. Kobe still has a lot more chapters to complete in his career. Maybe adding 4 more Championships and a couple of MVPs. Then we will talk about who was better. justgary: "Stunner, stop with the 'bold'. We can see your words, there's no need." That can be arranged. Nothing to it but to do it.

posted by STUNNER at 06:58 PM on May 10

That can be arranged. Nothing to it but to do it. Thanks stunner.

posted by justgary at 08:27 PM on May 10

Sure everyone will probably bring up stats to defend Jordan as the "Best Player Ever", but his career is over and Kobe's career isnt, so it wouldnt be fair to compare both players yet. No, but it should be fair to compare the players at the same ages (21 to 27, from Jordan's first season in the NBA to Kobe's current age, which is the only age/NBA season overlap we have so far):

  • Jordan played in 509 games. Kobe played in 507 games.
  • Jordan played 19673 minutes. Kobe played 20184 minutes.
  • Jordan scored 16596 points. Kobe scored 14111 points.
  • Jordan had 1371 steals. Kobe had 864 steals.
  • Jordan had 548 blocks. Kobe had 318 blocks.
  • Jordan had 3018 assists. Kobe had 2668 assists.
  • Jordan had 3186 rebounds. Kobe had 2996 rebounds.
  • Jordan had 1599 turnovers. Kobe had 1604 turnovers.
In summary, when using comparable age seasons (21 to 27), Jordan beats Kobe in EVERY SINGLE category (except minutes played).

posted by grum@work at 10:07 PM on May 10

and he can actually play defense too. I just want to remind you that Jordan won a "Defensive Player of the Year" award (1988) and was a 9-time "All-Defensive First Team" member. So I think "he can actually play defense" too.

posted by grum@work at 10:14 PM on May 10

Damn... Please Hammer, Dont Hurt 'Em

posted by everett at 10:37 PM on May 10

So Jordan played two games more than Kobe in that span, but played 511 minutes less. Very well put grum@work, thanks for teaching a newbie some new things. But Kobe did have a .324 3PT Field-goal ercentage and Jordan had .231 3PT Field-goal percentage during this spand.

posted by STUNNER at 11:41 PM on May 10

would u be able to play with somebody that u cant get along with. I couldnt. Then you would have no room whatsoever to call yourself a professional. I don't care what you do, if you're being paid to do it, you do the freakin' job to the best of your abilities. Nobody has a perfect job, and nobody has perfect co-workers, but we all do the job, and that's what makes us professionals. Most of us also do it without a multimillion dollar salary and the myriad perks that go with being a pro athlete. Dont defend Nash cause his teammates can make shoots. Kwame is the worst post player in the league. If he could of made 50% of his shoots in game 7 then they all wouldnt of given up. So, I'm not supposed to defend Nash, but I am supposed to defend Kobe and his Laker teammates for 'giving up?' Is that really what you're trying to say? Please tell me it's just sarcasm, and I've wildly misunderstood your meaning. Please.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 08:26 AM on May 11

But Kobe did have a .324 3PT Field-goal ercentage and Jordan had .231 3PT Field-goal percentage during this spand. After I finished my post, I realized that I'd left out 3pt shooting from the stats, but figured that overall scoring (no matter how you do it) would be good enough. I do agree that Kobe was a better 3pt shooter than Jordan during that span.

posted by grum@work at 10:15 AM on May 11

Actually, I agree that Kobe is straight up and down a better shooter than Jordan was at the same point in their career. I just don't think that equates to the same thing as being a better player. In fact, aren't people just having this arguement to, you know, have this arguement? There really isn't much of an arguement. Thanks again grum. At some point, rival sports sites are going to start bidding for your services. We could call you "The Settler" - you settle the score. It's kinda cool and mysterious. You could have a chime, or signature sound and a Buffer-esque entrance annoucement.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 10:27 AM on May 11

You could have a chime, or signature sound and a Buffer-esque entrance annoucement.
"Here comes the stats nerd!"

posted by grum@work at 11:30 AM on May 11

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