Friday, December 16th, 2011 at 2:05 pm  |  56 responses

Kobe Bryant Unsure About the Lakers’ Direction

by Marcel Mutoni @marcel_mutoni

Kobe Bryant is an angry man these days. Well, moreso than usual.

Bean’s Lakers were blocked by the NBA from getting Chris Paul (which he blames jealous, rival NBA team owners for), then inexplicably traded away Lamar Odom for basically nothing to the team that swept them out of the Playoffs last season.

With a new coaching staff, an aging and uneven roster (and no clear-cut sign that someone like Dwight Howard is on his way to save the day), and a true rivalry now with the neighboring Clippers, Kobe Bryant isn’t sure just what the hell his team is doing these days.

Some reporters have even begun to speculate that Bryant may ask for a trade if the Lakers struggle this season, but despite his anger at what has transpired in the front-office of late, Kobe maintains that he still believes the team can challenge for a title

The Daily News has the quotes:

“I’m not sure what the hell the direction is, to be honest with you,” Bryant said in his first public comments since the Clippers acquired Paul. “It’s none of my business to really get into. The way they go about it is, they handle their business upstairs.”

Bryant said he expected another move in the coming days, perhaps for Howard. “You would think,” he said, still obviously troubled by the Odom deal. “There is no explanation for that. It’s business and money and things like that, but still you don’t send Lamar to the Mavericks. You know what I mean? That’s just my opinion. They’ve proven they can build a team here that can compete for championships,” Bryant continued. “I’m sure they’re going to do that now. I don’t expect this to be a situation like in 2005, when they said, `You know what? We’re just going to cut payroll and cut everything and not contend for a championship.’ “I don’t expect that to be the case. I expect them to still try to be aggressive and make moves to build a championship team. If that’s the case, I’ll stand out of the way and let them do what they do.”

There’s no telling what’s going to happen with the Los Angeles Lakers and Kobe Bryant in 2012. All we know, for sure, is that it won’t be boring.

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  • http://nba.com GP23

    Kobe wants that 6th ring badly!! (And before anyone goes there, no! he aint leaving laker land).

  • Harlem_World

    You know Kobe is making sure something is in the works. No way he plays out the season with Fish as the starting pg and Matt Barnes the starting 3 – unless they have Dwight to compensate. Problem is, it’s not just on the Lakers – they need to have pieces other teams want. Right now, outside of Kobe, Bynum and Gasol are the only pieces and I don’t see teams breaking rank to get either of those guys for a Howard level franchise talent. Lakers may have been blocked out of position on all the latest activity and be the ones left holding the empty bowl. Can’t say I’m mad at that at all – call it payback for the Gasol robbery – just sayin…

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    People are overreacting. Espn even says the clippers are now better than lakers and cp3 is best player in LA. They are trying to get younger and create cap flexibility. Jim Buss may be an idiot but I’m pretty sure he knows how to build a winner.

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    It’s hilarious that guys are espn are predicting Kobe will demand a trade before seasons end.

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com yada

    lol who cares what espn say. they say alotta things. if i were kobe id be usure too. remember he wanted to go the bulls? anyway, all they did was lose odom. now they have 3 good players. only 1 is in their prime

  • http://shinefluid@aol.com yada

    lol who cares what espn says? they say alotta things. usually just for hype. but remember when kobe wants to go to the bulls? if i were kobe id be unsure too. they lose odom and thats pretty much it. they have 3 good players. 1 big man who may not be emotionally invested anymore. bynum who is hungry but who knows with him, and the bean who is still an all star but not the bean of old

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    They are still contenders right now. I don;t care what anyone says. Kobe is going to be better than last year and he was still pretty incredible last year. Pau has a chance to show management that he’s not he problem on the Lakers and that they are stupid if they think he should be traded. Peace has lost a few pounds and is looking to get back to being a contributing part of a team. Barnes should be back to his pre-surgery form (which was quite good, defensively and offensively) Blake wants to prove that he’s not the scrub he looked like last year. Fisher ain’t got sh*t and i’m not going to act like he does. Rookies are improved.(although Character is out for a month or two) McRoberts can be a solid bench option. Bynum if he is healthy will have a career year. I think he will show he is the second best Center in the L this year(I love Bogut, but Bynum has more potential going forward and has a chance to be better than him this year.) All in all the Lakers need to make changes, but this team isn’t bad by any means just not uber-talented.

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    And he’s still better than 95% of the league. Hopefully the knee holds up. I actually think this team will be better than last years team because they’re younger with Ebanks and McRoberts being key players. I could be just a delusional fan though.

  • http://skjflf.com Jukai

    Kobe isn’t asking for a trade, that’s dumb. His legacy would look better if he lives and dies a Laker.

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    Cosign Jukai.

  • http://slamonline.com jumpman22

    Don’t think the management care that much, Bean.

  • http://Slamonline.com Kap

    They are obligated to keep the best product in Staples bc of that billion dollar time Warner deal. No way they would get by with anything less than best for an extended period of time

  • http://nba.com GP23

    So will Dwight join Kobe in LA before christmas day?? I’m not sure..

  • T-Money

    jukai: yeah.. but he still did ask for a trade in 2007. anyways, the point is moot because the lakers are never trading kobe, it would be a terrible business decision and his contract is pretty much unmovable. HOWEVA, it is kind of a big deal when your star player questions the direction of the team. could you imagine the sh– show if bron would have said “i really don’t know what we are trying to do with signing battier and curry”?

  • http://www.slamonline.com Eboy

    Really, what’s a “down year” for the Lakers? Missing the playoffs? That’s not going to happen with this roster, even without another single move made. Kobe played on one really lousy team and most of his career he’s been involved in title wins or title chases. A very tiny percentage of players are afforded that type of scenario. Of course he wants to win again. What great player doesn’t. But if he goes the rest of his career without winning another title, no one’s ever going to say “wow, 5 titles only, what a piece of sh*t.” It would only be Kobe fanboys saying that the Lakers were shafted from getting CP3 or Dwight in 2011-2012 that kept him from better things. Live with it. 95% of the other teams in the league have to be on the outside looking in for most of the NBA’s history. Kobe’s had his time. There’s other cats coming up he won’t be able to hold off forever. He may still have a run in him at a title, but to think it should be there for the taking ’cause its “the Lakers”….well, you better get ready to say hello to the Clippers for the next decade or so cause they’re about to blow up. Where’s Kobe going to get a better situation? Chicago, playing with Rose and no one else (since their best players would have to go back to LA). Where else would be desirable? NY or Brooklyn would be the only other big market that could entice him, but the Nets don’t have the pieces and the Knicks wouldn’t be any better giving up Melo or Stat.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    CP is the best player in LA.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    That’s the most positive Laker comment I have ever seen Eboy write.

  • bull22

    yeah he needs to go somewhere alright… into RETIREMENT… tired of his mouth and how he wants more rings then jordan… needs to talk about having more rings then bill russell..

  • http://skjflf.com Jukai

    T-Money: but at that time, going to another team and winning a championship would have been better for his legacy than being a 7th/8th seed every year with the Lakers. He hadn’t shaken the whole “carried by Shaq” thing and he didn’t have every Laker fan medically grafted to his d*ck declaring him only second to Jordan.
    He has won two with the Lakers, I think making a few more deep playoff runs and padding those career numbers while continuing to inspire Lakers fans is the best for his legacy. And you know with Kobe, it’s ALL about legacy.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Eboy, we should do dinner… My treat. :D

  • Jerome

    @JT21: DWade is the best player in Miami.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Slick Ric

    CP is the best player in LA…. Clippers jerseys, had to finish the statement for you, you welcome, no problem.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    Please don’t ever use my name for such frivolity. Slam fix yo self!

  • Truth

    All this media hype is absurd! Kobe is still the best in LA by far.. CP3 has never been to a conference final, hes chubby, 10pounds overweight.. Deandre and Blake Griffin are too young and raw and who says Caron Butler is worth 8yrs 24 mil lol. Yes the clippers will make the playoffs, they might win 1 round. Lakers are still a top contender. Barnes and Blake will be better prepared! we got shooters now with Kapono and McRoberts and Ebanks has improved substantially. KOBE is 33 his time has not past! He rested a lot this summer.. got knee treatment in Germany, he’ll be fresh! Lakers DO NOT need a trade! or Dwight

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    I don’t think there’s such a thing as being 10 pounds over weight. My weight fluctuates 5 pounds throughout the day… I could lose 10 pounds in 3 days… If you think CP3′s weight holds him back you don’t watch ball. At least not correctly.

  • Dub

    Seeing how the NBA goes and hasn’t changed, I wouldn’t be surprised if he asks for a trade. What a joke.

  • vctmac

    this is the year wher the lakers break up. and hollywood has a new nation, clippernation
    it was cute while it lasted with this greatness stuff lol.

  • vctmac

    @EBOY you said it homie. kobe is great but to say and believe only the lakers deserve it; is absurd. lakers messed up from the second on tthey let Lamar Odom go. i dont see much scoring from the backcourt this year for the lakers ; kobe will get his own lets say. no other guard is aproven scorer on tht roster. they only have 2 SG, being kobe and gerald green. better get to makin’ moves homie or the Lakers might be on the other side of the fence this year lool.

  • http://wikipedia.org Eddie1

    No love for Eddie? Even after I predicted all this. Man…where the love?

  • robb

    Nothing shocking here, he’s unsure just like everybody else, including Mitch cupcake and fredo corleone

  • tomtom

    Hype, hype and hype! Listen, the clips are still a middle of the road team, Kobe’s comment was in passing (watch the video at ESPN) and most importantly the lakes are NOT planning a move involving bean lmao, you crazy?

  • Mike Mihalow

    He’s gonna demand a trade outta LA to the Clippers

  • http://www.triplejunearthed.com/dacre Dacre

    Kobe will be ready to roll.. I just hope that the season for Bynum isn’t so short that IF he did get indued he could actually get back to form in time for a decent playoff run and isn’t so long that he wears down and crashes as the playoffs get there….

    This is a great opportunity for Pau Gasol to step up this season. On paper: Bynum, Gasol and Bryant doesn’t look bad at all… the big issue is with coach Brown. I really really hope he shows some value with the chalk board.

  • Heals

    He can be sure that the last 3 years of his contract are outrageous under this new CBA…

  • Heals

    There’s what, 26 other teams that trade spots with the LAL in a second…

  • http://Slamonline.Com nbk

    I just read someone call Josh McRoberts a shooter. That’s like waiving a, I have no idea even where I am flag over your head, while naked, in traffic, at 5PM, on a Wednsday. — anyway, the Lakers are still a better team until proven otherwise (imo). But a trade is inevitable, so who knows, like Kobe said, what direction the Lakers are going.

  • http://skjflf.com Jukai

    nbk: maybe they’re confusing McRoberts for Luke Harangody? The only reason I say that was because I originally did and almost typed “well, he kind of is a shooter!”
    Then I remembered they are different people.
    I mean, just my guess. You could be right about the crazy thing.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Nick Tha Quick

    Josh McRoberts will quickly be the crowd favorite. One highlight dunk a game. Garbage points here and there. Left open to take long jumpers and will still take them.

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    Me neither, Kobe. The Lakers are a big question makr right now. And plus, Josh McRoberts isn’t a shooter, he’s a hustle guy, and a pretty decent role player

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    *Me too, Kobe

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Can’t believe we gave Odom to Dallas for nothing, when Lakers about to sign a 3 billion tv contract. Makes no sense, also we lost on Paul, Howard 1st choice is Nets, because he does not want to follow in Shaq footsteps. Lakers are making bad choices and decisions, we need something new. At least get a new point guard. As a Laker fan, Fisher should be coming off the bench not starting. BOOK IT!!

  • http://www.facebook.com/joe.l.brewer3 BlackPhantom

    @The Seed maybe LAL should go for Baron(even though he’s injured)he’d be an upgrade

  • http://skjflf.com Jukai

    The Seed: I heard Vanessa was breaking up with Kobe because she saw you sucking on Kobe’s ass. Any truth to this?

  • brandon

    i agree

  • http://slamonline.com Tae

    Well McRoberts did shoot 38% from 3pt range last season. But he’s streaky. But really Kobe is only 33 thats still young n he’s got alot of years left, he’s gettin no. 6 n possibly 7

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    23 of 60 in 73 games. He’s not a shooter by any stretch of anyone’s imagination. He plays PF/C anyway.

  • http://slamonline.com The Philosopher

    Shout out @Jukai for the imagination…

  • Justin G.

    Tae, Kobe may only be 33 but he’s an old 33. He has a lot of miles on that body compared to most in the league around that age.

  • Yesse

    I really agree with him.

    When they went for the CP3 trade, i thought they meant business, but now they haven’t made any moves. I thought they would have atleast went after Billups, Mo Williams, B-Diddy or Nene.

  • http://SLAM FLIGHT 9

    no more championship for KOBE!!!! ur probably lock at 5 rings… unless you get traded

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Thanks Jukai for your comment. Steve Nash still is overrated. BOOK IT!!

  • slamfan4life

    Get waived and come to CHI….<3

  • http://skjflf.com Jukai

    Touche, The Seed. Touche.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Tarzan Cooper

    Seed and jukai were made for each other. You two can touche yourselves forever, that’s legal in some states.

  • RussJones

    Black Mamba is King and the world knows it. Hes who MJ passed the torch to so get over your self Kobe haters. He deserves another ring and he deserves a championship team and team mates. Reward this man for all he has done for you Jerry and Mitch. And please bring Phil back I mean seriously.

  • Kyle

    So is Dirk Diggler God, Russ? The Lakers let Odom go to Cuban and the Mavs for NOTHING while they’re set up to have 30 something million off the books. They can defend the championship while Odom is only paid for a year and make a run at signing D-Will and or Howard.

    Bynum isn’t even an all-star and Kobe has one good year left in him. It was retarded to let go of Odom regardless of how you feel about him. Short seasons give the old teams a far better chance to win it all.