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Friday, May 11th, 2012 at 9:00 am  |  146 responses

Kobe Bryant: Andrew Bynum, Pau Gasol Must Play Better


by Marcel Mutoni @marcel_mutoni

Based on their play and level of competitiveness in Game 6, it was hard to tell who was the sickest: Kobe Bryant or his lifeless teammates.

The Denver Nuggets ran the Los Angeles Lakers off the floor last night in humiliating fashion, forcing a decisive Game 7 in the process. Afterwards, Kobe Bryant (who fought off a nasty illness to score 31 points) openly criticized the two seven footers on his team who were supposed to have made the Nuggets old news by now.

An enraged Kobe also guaranteed that he’ll stay in Andrew Bynum and Pau Gasol’s ears leading up to tomorrow night’s series-deciding showdown.

From NBA.com:

Already facing pressure to step up their play as the Lakers’ advantage of size and inside play goes to waste, Gasol and Bynum were moved even more into the crosshairs by Mike Brown and Kobe Bryant, both clearly frustrated by Gasol managing three points on one-of-10 shooting with three rebounds and by Bynum getting 11 points on four-of-11 shooting. Bynum did have a game-high 16 rebounds, but his series has become a run of nights without focus. “We’re going to need more out our two bigs,” Brown said. “They’re our second- and third-best players. We’re going to need a lot more out of those guys in order to win the series. But not just scoring wise. Defensively. Defensively to follow the game-plan discipline and do it with some effort and some energy and really just lay it out on the line.”

Bryant followed soon after. “Of course I agree with that,” he said of Brown’s critique. “I talked with Pau a little bit after the game and I’ll speak with Andrew as well. It’s one of those things where psychologically you have to put yourself in a predicament, in a position, where you have no other option but to perform. You have to emotionally put your back to the wall and kind of trick yourself, so to speak, to feel that there’s no other option but to perform and to battle, when you have that, when you have that mindset, your performance shines through, your talent shines through. It doesn’t matter what the defense does. It doesn’t matter because you’re emotionally at a level that is above that. That is the mindset that they have to put themselves in.”

The Denver Nuggets must now travel to L.A., and try to pull off the seemingly impossible. Can they overcome inexperience and potential jitters on the biggest stage imaginable?

As for the Lakers, the only bit of good news last night, is that Metta World Peace will play in Game 7, and Kobe bitterly noted that he’s the only teammate that he can truly count on to be aggressive every game. It remains to be seen, however, how well Metta can perform given that he’s missed the last seven games due to suspension.

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  • http://www.slamonline.com Dagger

    Gasol and Bynum weren’t good tonight, but frankly Kobe is just not the teammate he should be. Bynum and Gasol aren’t getting nearly enough touches inside, even when they establish position and call for the ball. Meanwhile Brown just hasn’t figured out how to use Gasol at all. Passive play can’t be excused, especially not in a game six, but I can see where the frustration is coming from. And who says this: “they’re our second- and third-best players.”

  • L Dribble

    “Kobe bitterly noted that he’s the only teammate that he can truly count on to be aggressive every game.” I am assuming the irony was intended. I’ll be watching the referring decisions closely on this one.

  • Fat Lever

    That is an awesome quote by Kobe. It also allows us to see into his mind’s eye on how he approaches playoff games(except that PHX fiasco a few years ago).

  • Bawse

    He is right. Gasol and Bynum are mentally weak. People try and act like Kobe has help but if he isnt on top of his game, most nights these guys will fail them. ESPECIALLY AGAINST GREAT COMPETITION. There is a reason why for four years Gasol never won a PLAYOFF GAME. If you are a star by sheer willpower you should win at least one game. Bynum hasnt won since middle school.

  • AsadSaleh3

    This isn’t on Kobe at all. How does a man who was throwing up all day play harder and better than his healthy teammates? Bynum is an immature kid. This isn’t about his age. He’s been in the league for 7 years, long enough to learn how to conduct yourself like a professional and play like one. It’s unacceptable for him to still be pouting and separate himself from his teammates in the huddle. If I’m Kobe, I have a serious issue with Bynum, more so than Gasol. Gasol just needs to toughen up. Bynum needs to straighten up or he will be the major reason why the Lakers lose. And for the 2nd season in a row, he will go out in a bad way. There is no way the Nuggets should be able to defend both Bynum and Gasol regardless of what they say about the Nuggets defense. Pay attention to the games. Those guys should have gone to Kobe pregame and told him that he didn’t have to shoulder the load because they would take pressure off of him. Instead, they left him out to dry.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    Lakers will win game 7. You can book it. Karl will be ousted in the 1st round again. And then we can talk about George Karl’s winning percentage in the playoffs amongst active head coaches. rofl I can’t stand that bitter two-faced loser.

  • http://twitter.com/phade2black_10 Chris B.

    How is this Kobe’s fault? Is it Kobe’s fault Bynum and Gasol went a combined 5-21 for 14 points? Is it Kobe’s fault Gasol and Bynum are getting abused by Kenny Faried, who is undersized? Is it Kobe’s fault that Pau and Bynum provide NO HELP WHATSOEVER againt the pick and roll? I know you guys hate Kobe but come on, he did what he was supposed to do last night, with the stomach bug at that. Bynum and Gasol didn’t deserve unlimited touches last night. And if they are the type of players that only play basketball when they get the ball in their hands consistently, then maybe they aren’t as good as we think they are. I’ve never seen a double team affect a player like it does Andrew Bynum. And Pau looks like the Pau of the series against the Mavs last year. Non-existent. We’ll be better off with Kobe shooting 35 times if the bigs are gonna play this way.

  • Justin G.

    Gasol not getting enough touches inside is neither Kobe’s nor Gasol’s fault. Brown has him on the perimiter on offense which I still don’t understand. Yes he’s a great passer for a big and has a nice touch from 15-20ft but that’s not where he’s most dangerous, especially in this series

  • RIGGS

    if denver can come out as hot as they did in the first quarter then the lakers are finished. I think Denver got rid of their jitters and are on a roll right now. If bynum plays like game 1 bynum then its the lakers game to lose.

  • http://kingakai.com Alpha-bet

    I love Kobe’s quotes in this ad far as tricking the mind…also on the flip side. All of the Lakers besides Mamba put up an embarrassing performance in Game 6.

  • whooo!

    I wanna say that Bynum must be one of the worst teammates ever, but then I realize that he probably learned from one of the best bad teammates in Kobe… I’m sick of hearing the blame is always on others from Kobe, he needs to lead not just by scoring but in the locker room. And Mike Brown has been completely out-coached.

  • whooo!

    And I realize it’s on the others too. But you also know from the get-go that Bynum is selfish, Gasol is sensitive, and MWP is a loose cannon. Phil Jackson does tremendous work in managing egos, but I question how much he actually teaches guys to develop the way some other coaches do.

  • R32

    Bynum and Gasoft didn’t play well last night, but we all know this is the Kobe system. Bottom line, he doesn’t trust his teammates enough.

  • http://slamonline.com joe

    @R32 This isn’t kobe system dude. Please watch the game carefully., Kobe wasn’t forcing shots, he def gave bynum and gasol lots of touches, he just torched shots when he saw gasol and bynum lifeless.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    I actually felt sorry for Kobe last night. I knew his team’s performance would only fuel future chucking and give more excuses for Kobe’s defenders, but it felt terrible to watch him doing his job in a professional manner and his team playing like sacks of crap.
    He actually deserved better than that.

  • kobe

    Worst teammate in NBA history. and dont say thats how he has 5 rings because he could probably have more minus his attitude. all igotta say best teammate ever has 11 rings Bill russell

  • Blue

    Almost everyone here is talking about where the Lakers are failing, but you have to mention that the nuggets are also winning these games. Rembember early on in the season? they were the 2nd seed for a while just behind OKC but then injurys began building up. There begining to reach that level of basketball again. Besides what makes the lakers that much better at the moment? Besides kobe, pau and drew there isin’t really too much else to brag about, and 2 of those 3 are in a rut. Also there bench has flaws and there coaching can sometimes be highly questionable.

  • http://hotmail.com Gangsta

    Kobe iz a real leader.Bringin memories of MJ.

  • PnoyVibe

    Co-sign joe,

  • LA Huey

    Kobe had the runs but all the Lakers shet the bed.

  • TOMGUGLIOTA

    guys were scared to shoot, out hustled, outrun…bigs played with no heart and sessions was torched by Lawson. The Lakers really needed a secod perimeter scoring option to open up the paint for the bigs (smh at the Beasley trade falling through).

  • http://www.offthebackboard.wordpress.com Off The Backboard

    Why is no one discussing that Mike Brown has been thoroughly OUTCOACHED in this series? That is where the problem is for the Lakers. George Karl has made it easy to beat them – simply pack the paint and force Gasol and Bynum out of rhythm with double teams, and dare the perimeter players to shoot from the see. You know how I know Dagger didn’t watch the game? He said Kobe should “pass inside more”…how can I player pass inside to guys who don’t have post position inside??!??! I hate when people comment without watching the game. Yesterday’s game wasn’t lost because of Kobe, it was lost because of the incompetence of Matt Barnes’ horrific shooting, Gasol’s passiveness, and Bynum’s laziness.

  • Justin05

    I agree with Tom, we need a good 3 point shooter to come off the bench for us. The 2 spot would be ideal but anyone over 6’6 would be nice; the lakers guards are just too small for Denver and are getting eaten by afflalo, brewer, and gallinari. Our size doesn’t help us because pau and Bynum have lost their confidence. They aren’t go-to-guys on offense. Smh @ Gasol…I guess he just isn’t that great anymore

  • http://www.offthebackboard.wordpress.com Off The Backboard

    There were atleast 10 possessions where the Lakers allowed wide open 3s. Ty Lawson torched them from 3 and from the paint. They started the game down 13-0, came back, and them allowed another 20-3 (or something similar) run in the 3rd quarter. Mike Brown has made NO ADJUSTMENTS that are actually working. The only different thing he has tried is putting Kobe on Andre Miller (it worked). Karl, meanwhile, pressures the ball coming up (to limit the shot clock opportunity to set up), and runs 2 defenders at Bynum every single time he touches the ball. The paint is packed. The only opportunity the Lakers have to win is if Gasol starts hitting mid range shots and Barnes and Blake can make perimeter shots. They did not do that in Games 6 and 3. The game they did do that (game 4), the Lakers won.

  • Hambone

    In other news, a bear was seen having a dump in the woods

  • Leon Upshaw

    This whole series is a joke. Denver is a up and coming team with a number of top player that play the game the it is suppose to be played. While the Lakers are a team I followed for the past 15 years and like very much make my stomach hurt the way they play. I’m not sure waht coach brown bring to the table. Why would you have one of the best big men i the league 20 feet away for the basket? Why are you not pounding the ball down to your bigs. Why are your team not playing with focus? These are concerns that shoud have been address by the coach. You have a suppose superstar player in Bryant that more interested in scoring 40 point a game then winning. You have a Coach that needs to get a clue. Really

  • R32

    @joe Maybe not last nights game, but in the grand scheme of the offense its definitely the Kobe system. brb taking 30 shots a night..

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    “the only player i can count on night in and night out is Metta World Peace” – Kobe Bryant……signs of a team in trouble.

  • AQWORD

    This shows how fragile the Lakets really are after all that big talk. Hope Ty LawSon tares em up with a sic game & spanks one on Bynum for a little playoff sendoff poster.

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    The Lakers didn’t get outcoached as far as schemes. They got outcoached in the sense that Mike Brown couldn’t convince two of his three best players to play with heart.
    Then again, the same thing happened to Phil Jackson with the same two players last year.

  • http://slamonline Brion

    I dont know what it is but I cant stand Bynum. such a baby.

  • http://bleacherreport Verasity

    Wow, it must be tough on Kobe to be the only one who can walk on water.

  • http://www.soundcloud.com/tray-5 T-Ray

    Allen you can’t coach heart that’s just something in your character. That’s why Phil and Mike can’t convince them to play with heart.

  • Kelvin from Compton

    I’m sick of hearing people claim Bynum and Gasol don’t get enough “touches” ?? what is that??It’s ridiculous!!! Go get the ball if you want the ball!! Demand the ball in the post if you want the ball!! stop being a wimp complaining because you don’t get enough “touches”

  • Ashante Green

    This series should have been over! Kobe worked hard in the last 2 games to try to win. Gasol and Bynum seem as if they were lost. They had me thinking I was watching Space Jam and all their talent was sucked out of them. They try to blame it on the high altitude for them getting so tired too quick. They are young and that souldn’t be a factor. All in all the big guys need to step up and play like the big guys they are. I give props to the Killer B’s also for trying to stand their ground in the last 2 games. Barnes and Blake keep playing hard! Ebanks outstanding you should have been in right after halftime! I love my LAKERS, but y’all scaring me boys!

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    T-Ray
    Coaches are paid to motivate and to create strategy.
    That’s their job. If they can’t do either part of their job, then it’s a coaching issue. Yes, Phil and Mike Brown can only do so much, but they aren’t doing nearly enough.
    Particularly with Bynum. He’s too young an unproven to be getting this sort of leeway. It’s crazy.

  • http://www.crappyrappers.com Simon Caine

    Championship or bust for Mike Brown.

  • http://www.crappyrappers.com Simon Caine

    And Ty Lawson will never shoot like that again. And Corey Brewer won’t score 18 again. Once-in-a-season game.

  • AsadSaleh3

    It’s not championship or bust for Brown because this is a team that got swept in the 2nd round last season with a better squad than they have this season. At worst, he has to match last season. This is on Bynum. Then Gasol. Bynum needs to get himself together. Period. Gasol comes and goes, not shocking. But Bynum has spent the season openly disrespecting his coach and his teammates by his actions and his words. You’re foolish if you believe that Kobe hasn’t been a good teammate this season.

  • http://www.soundcloud.com/tray-5 T-Ray

    Agreed Allen but I think at this point of at least Pau’s career he shouldn’t need an extra push in motivation.

  • http://www.crappyrappers.com Simon Caine

    Kobe will not go through another year with this lackluster offensive scheme. Pau hovering around the 3 point line. Wings players spaced directly where the defense wants them so teams can double down with no worry. Not saying they need to run the triangle, but you can’t keep putting your post players in position to be doubled. There’s not enough spacing or movement. Bynum isn’t playing with real fire, but you can’t do a whole lot when you’re getting doubled every possession with no adjustments.

  • AQWORD

    SIMON C . Word to asad. At least yhey picked the right game to show up. The question is will the Lakers show up 2mrw ? Maybe. Thats why im not missing game 7. Got a feeling Ty Lawson will not be stopped by anyone.

  • surety

    Here’s something that may come as a surprise: neither Gasol nor Bynum want to play with Kobe.

  • d

    Last year Pau Gasol had the same problem, according to Stephen A Smith, ESPN. Bynum only became active after the game was blown out. Shameful. Your team leader is ill – on the floor with gastroenteritis which weakens one, at best, and does result in death in others. Here’s Bryant balling hard, getting IV’s while doing so, and his big guys do not say to themselves, “Our leader is ill. Don’t worry Kobe, Coach, fans, we’ve got his back! We’re putting this away.” Bynum is such a disappointment, I don’t know what to say. People can hate Kobe all they want. You cannot question the work ethic or greatness of this guy. But how great can one be with a sadly unsupportive cast?!!

  • AsadSaleh3

    If Denver gets a star player to pair with Lawson, perhaps a star scorer, they’ll be tough. They’ll have to sacrifice some of their depth, but they need a consistent scorer to put with Lawson, Afflalo, an improving JaVale McGee, and Faried. George Karl is doing a great job with this team and their young GM has put together a good young core.

  • http://www.crappyrappers.com Simon Caine

    I like Ty Lawson, but if you’re looking for him to close out a series..nope. Pau may not want to play with Kobe, but he’d rather jack up threes in LA than play anywhere else.

  • Christian Leon

    I am sorry to say that the lakers have NO balls they play with NO heart!
    The two bigs are SO inconsistent it’s hard to watch this laker team! They need to go out each day and play hard and have FUN!!!!! Cone on guys LA is counting on you!!! We can win the hole thing if you play hard each night!!!
    GO LAKERS!!!!

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Simon
    Forget offense. He wasn’t even trying on defense.It was pathetic. That’s where the Lakers really lost. The Nuggets don’t play great defense. The game was relatively close evne with the great shooting because the Nuggets play zero defense. But, instead of the Lakers locking down and getting stops, Bynum is loafing. And he was loafing in the game where McGee went off. It was pathetic.

  • Lonnie Ormes

    Seriously Guys, I think the Lakers will never see OKC……The nuggets have already proven they can win at Staples, and we’ve done nothing to dis-prove their confidence……This year is toast, what we need is Odom back…..and pick up Ray Allen, and Blake Griffen in free agency….

  • doe

    no excuse for the way Bynum played!! Lakers passed him the ball and He THREW IT BACK OUT TO THE GUARDS!! ON YOU FOR NOT SHOOTING!!

  • http://abcnews charliewinning

    Dear Backetball gods, please allow the Nuggets to pull off the upset in game 7. Then, please allow the Nuggest to get swept in round 2. It would be much appreciated. Thanks.

  • http://abcnews charliewinning

    Damn this dumb#ss phone!

  • http://www.soundcloud.com/tray-5 T-Ray

    Lol @Charlie
    #Iphone problems

  • vinceares

    As usual, the two bigs can’t play “BIG” – they’re just two lousy players trying to play a game that seems to be bigger than they are. Why do these two AHs have to be reminded that their salaries don’t change every game so their level of play shouldn’t either. Given, they’re not perfect, but damn – play like a million dollar man and not someone playing in college who don’t get paid like they do right now…These two dudes are becoming more like “duds” and it shows….

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    Last night’s loss wasn’t Kobe’s fault just like Game 5 loss wasn’t Bynum’s fault but Bynum gets the blame. There has to be a certain point when people acknowledge that a championship contending team’s 2nd best player should be getting more than 8-10 shots in a game no matter how lazy/bad he plays on the defensive end. Let’s not act like Kobe is out there playing lockdown defense, Bynum should be getting his fair share of shots regardless of his play on the defensive end.

  • http://yahoo.com A. J.

    Kobe is right on target! He has developed into an outstanding leader with MVP talents. He is respected and knows what he talking about! And, no,I am not a Laker fan! But I am appreciate and respect model and class behavior!

  • http://www.substanceabusehiphop.com Subz

    Bynum dropped Kareem as center coach because he said he didn’t need him. As a result he plays with no heart, class, and humility.

  • Joe

    Obviously, Gasol and Bynum are more worried about their egos than actually winning. When Gasol is shooting as terrible as he was last night, he should be using his size and trying to fight for the offensive board.. instead he had ONE. As for Bynum, well, we know he’s just a crybaby; who else still remembers that flagrant no.2 on Barea in game 4 agains the Mavs last year? They need to understand that scoring the only aspect in basketball. Of course, they didn’t learn from last year, so I don’t think that will happen. It’s time to rebuild, they should trade these two for Dwight. I knew it was bogus when people were saying that Bynum is better than Howard.

  • Bruce

    Just an observation,but it seems like Kobe with his need to take at least 25 shots per game(making a low percentage compared to the rest of the team most games) and constant need to inform the press that he is “calling out teammates” wears on teammates to the point that they just get tired of the drama that Kobe produces day after day. Kobe has been blessed to have played with the top big men in the game for about 14 of his 16 seasons. Shaq had enough of him after three titles,capped off when the Lakers were upset by the Pistons while Kobe,obviously looking for his first finals MVP, chucked it up to the tune of about 38% from the field while ignoring the rest of the team. Pau and Drew have been making around 55% of their shots this year and enabling Kobe to concentrate on winning the scoring title by taking about the same amount of shots as they did combined and about four or five shots per game more than LeBron and about three or four more than Durant(who still beat him out).
    Kobe has an annoying attitude of entitlement. He somehow expects the bigs like Odom,Gason,Bynum and Shaq to control the paint, rebound,score on the rare occasions when he passes them the ball and be grateful that they had a chance to play on the same team as him. As far as the other teammates go,Kobe wastes much of the 24 second clock with his dribbling,passes only when in trouble or when he thinks he will get an assist and takes impossible(though I give him credit for making them sometimes)shots when teammates have wide open looks.
    Though Brown seems to put up with him because he wants to keep his job,Kobe wears on coaches too. Phil and Derek Fisher had to constantly smooth over problems with teammates because of Kobe’s me attitude and need to do his own thing rather than move the ball or be a part of the offense rather than the whole offense.
    Bottom line,Kobe is very overrated when it comes to being a winner. He’s had the best big men around him for about 14 of his seasons. He is unwilling to share the ball or the credit with the guys who have carried him. The truly great players like Russell,Duncan,Magic,Bird and Kareem never had problems sharing the ball or the applause with teammates like Kobe does. All of them brought out the best in teammates. All(except Russell who played defense and rebounded and seldom shot ) made about 50% or more of their shots.

  • Neb

    Pre sure everyone on the lakers need to play better. Lets face it, they suck! Kobe is losing his touch and no one on the lakers have the touch.

  • Bruce

    Kobe has led a blessed basketball life. He has played in the NBA for 16 years and for fourteen of those years he has had some of the top big men(Shaq,Odom,Gasol and Bynum) in the game as teammates. The only two years he lacked a dominating front line he missed the playoffs and was done in the first round of the other. After the one and done year he demanded a trade. His field goal percentage lifetime is about 45%,probably less than the rest of the team average in those years.
    After three titles and the finals in 2004 in which Kobe seemed way more interested in winning his first finals MVP than his team winning the title(how else to you explain his 38% or shooting percentage while taking the lions share of the shots and ignoring Shaq?),Shaq had enough of it and was traded. The team fell apart due to stress. Phil,faced with the chore of coaching a team led by Kobe and without Shaq took time off too. In his book he he called Kobe uncoachable. The fact is Kobe has always wanted to do his own thing and often competed with teammates as much as he competed with the opponent.
    His habit of embarrassing teammates and self proclamation as “leader” in spite of playing his own individual game and reluctance to share the ball with the bigs who have carried him to most of his five titles is weighing on his current teammates now too. They are tired like Shaq was of Kobe hogging the ball and the spotlight. Bynum clearly rebels against Kobe and Gasol does so in his own quiet way. This season the 43% shooting Kobe has taken about as many shots per game as Bynum and Gasol combined. Both of them make over 50%. If Kobe really wants to win he needs to learn to play team ball. It is too late for a new set of bigs to carry him.

  • dsleepy

    i watched a few sequences where pau just didn’t even ATTEMPT to play defense. i know he’s a good player, but he’s starting to look like pau from last year’s playoffs again. no heart man, and no sense of competitive pride.

  • http://www.espn.com Paul H

    I called a tight series and It hasn’t disappointed. This Lakers team Is not deep enough to allow players to have such underwhelming games like the ones Gasol and Bynum had last night. It was a pretty pathetic sight In a potential series ending game. I still the Lakers will prevail but they better step It up….

  • http://none norma labean

    I think Kobe is right, no one played up to par…I blame the coach, why doesn’t he know how or where to play Gasol…Bynum should be trader,I said that a year ago, he will hinder the Lakers in the long run…he’s to much into himself…Quit blaming Kobe for everything, he knows how to win…Lakers are a better team than the last two games show…

  • James

    LMFAO @ nbk hes looking like slam’s headlines right about now so misleading he said he counts on him to be agressive every night, nbk should join the media

  • DreDay

    Make the trade for Howard!!! A$AP!!!

  • http://yahoo bobwolf

    gasol and byrum were out played by smaller players and if you look at there play last night and other games, they had no energy and were just walk up and down the court. this is for not just for the lakers, but for all the teams in the nba. you have a god given talent and are getting payed to do something you love to do. so go out there and have fun and play some ball and stop crying about things that don’t matter. if you go out there and give it all you have that’s all the fans ask for. so for the lakers go out and play some defense and win this series already. a fan sense 1972 lets go lakers.

  • la-shine

    Wow what a disheartening performance by the lakers last night. Im still trying to figure out why they let the nuggets even think that they have a chance in this series. uncontested 3′s, pull up jumpers by corey brewer?! are you f-ing kidding me, dont get me wrong i give him credit for making some tough shots but damn, he better log that tape into his vault because he will NEVER have a good of shooting night as he did. we didnt even try to defend get rebounds or anything really. there was zero effort on everyone except kobe’s part. i hope he rips his team a new A because they need it. never thought id say this but we need MWP. Bye DENVER you made it interesting but you can never beat us in a 7 game set

  • http://www.crappyrappers.com Simon Caine

    Allen – I agree, he played with absolutely no urgency on defense. But he’s high maintenance. He needs to be engaged on offense and getting scoring opportunities in order for him to really care about getting back on defense.

  • Anthony

    im wondering what Pop could do with Bynum, maybe not much more but he was the only one who convinced Glenn Robinson to play defense (to a certain extent)

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    If your an intelligent person here’s what you took from last nights Lakers/Nuggets Game:
    1. Bynum and Gasol were the obvious and main blame for the loss.
    2. The Lakers defense was worse than their offense.
    3. GK>MB
    It is absolutely absurd. ABSURD. To claim that Kobe should have been passing to the post more. You either did not watch the game or you have some sort of infatuation with watching a leather ball get passed into the paint area as it’s stolen, stuffed, or a missed FG goes up, and if it does not happen on every play that is disgusting basketball to you.
    Kobe wasn’t perfect, his defense left allot to be desired, but I CANNOT come down on a guy who played hard at least on one end. Honestly the easiest bucket Bynum got all night was a missed KB FG that he easily tipped in. I swear when the bigs are this passive and play with this lack of urgency and all around care or desire the best basketball possible for the Lakers is Kobe Jack Shots Edition™…

  • jack cu

    why nobody mentioning using other players, if a player is having a bad day, try other one, dont force to use a bad day players…

  • http://grantland.com StuBaby

    Wow, I’ve never seen Kobe go 5-21 lmao. Bynum is a lousy human being though. I wonder what he’d be doing if he was 6’1″ instead of 7’1″.
    80% chance Lakers win game 7. They will get the calls and Denver won’t. David Stern runs a business, and business is good when the Lakers keep playing.
    Love this Denver team though. I think they’ve got a bright future.

  • Dungeon Family

    Kobe had an Efficient Game last night 13 of 23 Pau had 3 points and 2 rebounds………Sessions had wide open shots he didn’t take…..Ty Lawson and Andre outplayed Sessions and Blake……There is no way in hell Faried should get more Rebounds than Pau

  • PnoyVibe

    It must be Denver’s altitude

  • Dungeon Family

    And don’t get me started on Mr.”Closeout Games are Easy”

  • http://grantland.com StuBaby

    Faried is a monster (or manimal), and will consistently out rebound Pau and most other PFs not named Kevin Love. He’s making a lot of teams sorry for passing on him.

  • AsadSaleh3

    @Bruce Completely wrong on everything you said. “Kobe’s lived a blessed basketball life” as if everything was given to him and he was carried by teammates to 5 championships and all of the other accomplishments he has. Absolute BS. He was a 17 year old bench player in his first season. Turned himself into the 2nd best two guard to ever pick up a basketball by sheer hardwork and determination. Without Kobe, Shaq would have 1 ring so let’s not act like Kobe was just a role player on those teams. Let’s not be stupid. You clearly dislike Kobe’s game. The same old tired nonsense that other people who dislike his game and his attitude say. I could sit here and pick apart everything you said, but this is about last night’s game. Bynum’s antics are irritating. Gasol’s tendency to disappear and play soft has gotten old. They need to man up and play with some heart in Game 7 or they will be done and it won’t be Kobe’s fault at all.

  • whit

    i feel bad for Kobe too.. bynum only plays when he feels like it.. this will be proven if he comes out and plays hard sat. sad kobe has to basically parent that kid.. Gasol is cool… artest is a dirty player and will prob try to draw blood on faried and break harringtons nose even more.. shoulda been extracted from the league when they had the chance

  • tyler

    @ bruce completley disagree with you if you dont share the ball explain 5 rings please, and odom a top big man in the league are u serious u cant be even in his prime he was over hyped and for bynum 1 all star team does not make u a top big man hell i would rather have roy hibbert at least he has heart and plays defense and improves every single year

  • jayb

    gasofty and fat albert need to show up. kobe was vomiting all day and found a way to the be the most productive and gave the most energy on the floor and had none..kinda pathetic…2 years in a row pau gave nothing! kinda sad and peeps wondered why la was trying to trade big for small as in cp3 and peeps thought la was insane..well look now at exhibit a…need i say more…la better show up but to be honest at this point..they may win game7 but getting to game7…as much as i am a laker fan…reality is that okc sweeps next round! they have young legs and have been off a week!

  • dennis

    kobe is all alone out there.

  • IAMORANGE4EVER

    Bynum definitely hyped them up talking about closeout games being easy.

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

    I don’t blame Kobe at all. Pau played like the diarrhea Kobe suffered before the game. And Bynum is just so immature.

  • whit

    hahahaha well put @jayb and @blackphantom

  • BL

    remember this Bynum Quote: “Note to self, the more I play D the better we will be.” What happened?
    Kobe’s 23 shots were at his average, and over 50%. What happened to the rest of them?
    In order to get more shots you have to TAKE them, …how many times did the “bigs” lose the ball or pass it back? There is a shot clock, so the ball makes the rounds, nobody wants to shoot, and it winds back in Kobe’s hands with a few seconds remaining. So, would you rather a shot clock violation, or, a shot by someone who knows how to get a good look? And if Bynum thinks anyone else (another team) wants to play with a quitter, he better re-think his position.

  • http://slamonline.com LakeShow

    People who think that Kobe isn’t a leader are highly delusional. If you thought Jordan was a good leader, you think Kobe is a good leader. They have the exact same style for leading their teams. By example. Not by talk(like Fisher), not by energy or passion(like Garnett), not with carefully placed words and ideas(like P-Jax), but in the same way MJ led Chi-Town, Kobe does the same with the Lakers.
    If they aren’t on board that’s on them.

  • Bruce

    Asad:
    Plain and simple,Kobe’s game has always been self serving. He feels he is an entity separate from his teammates. There are players who encourage and contribute to team unity (Magic,Kareem,Bird,Duncan and of course,Russell). There are stars who have a great deal of ability but by their actions they demand to be treated not like other teammates,but as a star. The former group creates a team atmosphere,team unity and a shared responsibility for victories and defeats. Kobe on the other hand competes with teammates for attention(biggest drama queen in the game) and instead of helping others develop unity during the season,create resentments by publicly criticizing teammates to the press,playing individual basketball and over dribbling and taking time off the shot clock,thus limiting rather than enhancing the skills of teammates.
    How presumptuous of Kobe to act superior and comment to the press on how he is going to have a “talk” with Gasol and Bynum. They should have had a talk with Kobe during the season about how he was chasing a scoring title rather than working on team cooperation and attitude. Frankly,a star should lead and set the example like the aforementioned players rather than doing his own thing,alienating the big men who make it possible for him to be in contention and then making condescending statements about how he is going to “talk” to them. Granted,Bynum is immature,but Kobe is too. Good leadership requires working on team relationships during the season,not calling out individuals who are already resentful toward you. It is pretty obvious that both Bynum and Gasol are tired of Kobe’s selfishness and pomposity. He’ll be lucky if his “talk” (if indeed he has the guts to approach either of them after his statements to the press) doesn’t alienate them further.

  • AsadSaleh3

    @Bruce The facts disprove your argument about him being “self-serving”. How many “self-serving” players have 5 rings being either the best or second best player on the team? Selfish players don’t win championships because no one can do it by themselves. Wasting your time with all those words. You’re wrong here dude. You obviously didn’t watch the Lakers play too much over the past 16 seasons. Kobe got into it with Shaq multiple times, something tells me he wouldn’t fear Bynum, Gasol and any of the other guys he plays with. Nothing you’ve said is right. Nothing at all.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Kobe got into it with Shaq because he was self-serving (they both were). If you are arguing that Kobe is not selfish then you are ignorant.

  • JaiDaveon

    I get so tired of Kobe being the fall guy … they are not getting enough touches … the touches they get, they can’t do anything with them. I wouldn’t trust them either. If they dislike Kobe, then too bad. He wants to win and is able to help himself in that direction. I have worked with people like that and all they have are excuses. Bynum is lazy and at times he looks spaced … Gasol is too timid to let go … his brother Marc has more strength and he fights. Don’t keep blaming Kobe because the mark of a good leader is not being popular. There are times when you have to tell a person the truth and from the games I was looking at, Bynum and Gasol played poorly back to back, and I don’t care when they got the ball, it didn’t go in or they turned it over, they could not retrieve a rebound … so you tell me what games you were looking at. I have been in Kobe’s predicament when things had to get done and I was certainly disliked because I pulled no punches to get the job done. They are being paid just like Kobe, and if he had not played like he did in Game 5, it would have been another embarrassment. Kobe did lead; he showed them that he could help his cause and all you jealous haters need to get off his back. Get out there yourselves and see how much better you could do. Your attitude about Kobe is that he acts superior … he coached those guys when he wasn’t playing because he is smart as hell and you know it and all of you haters resent it. Get on the two that acted like they had all season to win a game. I am glad Kobe has thick skin because he doesn’t care one way or the other what you think and this is just a perfect situation to bash him. If you listen to all the rhetoric I have just read, it is just tired … get off this type of bandwagon … this guy works his butt off to be good because he wants nothing short of excellence and he didn’t half-heartedly go after it, he went totally after it. If he had not played individual basketball in Game 5, it would have been another night like it was in Game 6. The jealousy is just amazing and the more I read this horseradish, the angrier I get. None of you haters could measure arms with Kobe and if you had a team, any analyst, any GM, any coach would tell you, they would take Kobe. He always plays hard and if those 7-footers stood around and got totally embarassed, he should not have had to say anything to them … they should be looking at themselves. He is trying to deal with grown men, not boys … he is not their father … they are getting a paycheck too, and he fought for Pau not to be traded … Bynum opened his misguided mouth and created this scenario, but I don’t see you shifting the blame where it belongs. I just had that flu that Kobe had and it is something to lie down with or stand up, and for him to play … regardless of what you morons think, even saying he was imitating MJ … where did you buzzards come from. I am a passionate fan … like it or not … I like Kobe and I love the Lakers, and all these prejudiced comments directed towards him gets on my nerves. All it boils down to, like MJ said, he has respect for Kobe’s game and spoke up about it … so who do you all think you are crucifying a person that tries his level best. He didn’t alienate the “big men” … the “big men” should have gotten up off their dusties and played like the game meant something. You can’t play an every-now-and-then game, it was important for them to close this series out, and if Bynum and Gasol had stepped up in Game 5, we wouldn’t be having this conversation. It is frustrating to give all you have and the collective effort of others involved is minimal. I saw this happen in Game 6 with Houston and I saw them fall to Phoenix after being up 3-1. So you sit on your thrones and crucify Kobe all you want, but at the end of the day, it is blatant jealousy because Kobe mostly keeps his mouth shut, so to call him a drama queen is just ridiculous. Put yourself in his position and let’s see how you come out … you are a bunch of wisdomless wonders … good luck to you haters.

  • AsadSaleh3

    @Bruce You’re a complete fool if you truly believe everything you’ve said here. Kobe’s immature? Perhaps something you could argue effectively 6 or 7 years ago, definitely not in the last few seasons. Kobe’s leadership is modeled after Jordan, so all of the things you’ve said about him, you’d have to say about Jordan as well. Same mental makeup, same attitude on the floor with teammates. And the biggest diva in the NBA resides in Orlando, Florida, not LA.

  • AsadSaleh3

    Kobe got into it with Shaq because he had improved his game dramatically and wanted to be able to show it because it would make the team better (which it did). Also, Shaq came to camp overweight and out of shape multiple times and had a lackadaisical attitude towards practice and preparation. They had two different approaches with the game. Those were Kobe’s main issues with him. Not because they were both selfish. They both had huge egos, but having an ego doesn’t mean you’re selfish. Every superstar player has an ego.

  • Linda Singleton

    I just submitted a comment on the wrong name, which is “JaiDevon” .. those are my comments and it started with, “I get so tired of Kobe being the fall guy. The name was in the box already, and I forgot to remove it. I am thinking maybe it should have been blank, but it wasn’t, so if anybody wants to know, I had a lengthy, passionate comment.

  • AsadSaleh3

    @Linda You’re right on all accounts.

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

    No sh*t, Kobe is selfish. Now if you still think he’s a ball-hog then you probably just hate him, that comment is pretty inaccurate now, unless you hate him.

  • Lonnie Ormes

    Never thought I’d say this, but the Lakers need to get rid of that marshmellow named Gasol for someone like Pierce or Blake Griffin and we need a bench…….These sorry Laker Bigs are being outplayed by guys that are much smaller……This current team is made up of millionaires who give no effort…..We’ll never see OKC this year…..

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Kobe wanted to be the man. He proved how badly he wanted to be the man in the finals in 2004. Look at his shot attempts in the finals, it’s astonishing how much he shot compared to Shaq, completely and utterly absurd how selfish he was. He was taking upon himself, again selfishly, to “showcase” his ability. It ended up getting Shaq jettisoned from town, where he went on to win another title while Kobe selfishly struggled to make the playoffs. You can’t argue with facts (even though i’m sure you will). And those are facts.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    that’s not to say Kobe hasn’t matured a lot since then. He is still a very selfish guy, which i don’t really blame him for, it’s just a personality trait. but he is not nearly as selfish on the court as he used to be. But he was extremely selfish when he hit his prime. and selfish to a fault.

  • AsadSaleh3

    @nbk Shaq got traded because Dr. Buss wanted him out. He chose to go with the younger superstar. I spot another person who dislikes Kobe’s attitude and game. Aww, so sad. Shaq went on to win another title because of Wade taking over that Finals series, not anything spectacular that he did. Kobe played with Kwame Brown and Smush Parker which is why he missed the playoffs, not because he was selfish. And those aren’t facts you provided, those are your opinions of him and his game. Unless you spoke with his teammates or him personally, you don’t know if he was selfish or not. Unless you were in his head. I doubt that you were.

  • AsadSaleh3

    The Lakers lost in 2004 because they tried to put together a super team and it didn’t work. The Pistons were well-coached by Larry Brown and they had a complete team that the Lakers didn’t match up well with.

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

    No, I’m not gonna argue with that. That’s the thing about Kobe though, I love his determination, work ethic, and will to win, but I hate his selfishness. I personally believe if he weren’t selfish, he’d put up about 27/5/7 on a year-in and out basis, probably even more points throughout his prime. But I think when it comes to passing and court vision, he’d probably be alot like LeBron is now, or like the type of passing numbers seen from MJ throughout his career. He’s done it before, He averaged 30/7/6 in 02-03.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Everyone knows Kobe is selfish. Arguing it is honestly stupid. I understand that you are an irrational Lakers fan. Just take a step back realize what everyone else does. And the reason Buss wanted him out is because Kobe was set to sign a max extension which would have caused him and Shaq to use up about 66% of the Salary Cap just between them two. He chose Kobe because he was younger.
    .
    And I have no issues with Kobe whatsoever, I love watching him play, always have and always will. But that doesn’t hamper my ability to be reasonably logical and observant.
    .
    “(There is) lack of concentration, overconfidence and a certain level of selfishness, in general.” – Pau Gasol, after a game in which Kobe shot 9 of 31 from the field.
    .
    Just as example of Kobe’s teammates talking about selfishness on their team. Go ahead and TRY and say he is not talking about Kobe, that’ll make wonderful sense.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    Asad, yeah that makes sense Larry Brown’s team of guys was more talented than the Lakers team of Hall of Famers with Phil Jackson as the coach. THAT’S WHY THEY LOST. BAHA, gtfoh.
    .
    They lost because Kobe and Shaq were both selfish, Kobe at the time, moreso.
    .
    Want proof?
    .
    -During the 2004 playoffs, Kobe shot 153 more field goals than Shaq over a 22 game span.
    And he only made eight more field goals total.
    .
    Fin.

  • AsadSaleh3

    People confuse selfishness with ego. Kobe’s ego is on another level than any other player because of the work he puts in, what he’s accomplished and what he’s striving for. I’m actually not a Lakers fan. I just watch guys play. Gasol would have room to talk and be almost believable if he was known for being aggressive at all times and acted like he wants to dominate when he’s on the floor, but he’s not. If Derek Fisher made comments about Kobe, I’d pay attention to them. Not Pau Gasol who as we speak is disappearing from the current series they’re playing.

  • AsadSaleh3

    No, nbk. They lost because as I said, the Pistons were a more complete team. Read carefully son. I didn’t say they were more talented. They played better together. No alpha dog. Great defensive team with a great PG leading them.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    whatever dude, focus on me misusing a word then the actual point. that’s what matters.

  • http://slamonline.com nbk

    The Lakers had a better team. Better players, better coach. They lost because the selfish nature of their two best players tore the team apart from the inside out. They didn’t lose because they were over-matched. If Kobe and Shaq put their selfishness or egos (whatever you want to call it, it’s the same thing on the court) aside they would have won the title. And they would have probably won 6 or 7 of them instead of 3.

  • http://cnbc.com JTaylor21

    The 2004 Lakers lost to a team they had no business losing to because Kobe took and missed damn near twice as many shot as Shaq. Simple as that.

  • FrankO

    Pau Gasol disappearing in the playoffs? Again? I read somwhere that NBA players’s annual salary is based on games played during the regular season, no wonder Pau and Bynum take the playoffs off, maybe we the fans should make a donation to the starving useless Laker’s big men. Maybe that will motivate them. and can some please tell Sessions to “PLEASE” take a shot when he is open.
    Young man don’t be affraid of failure, take a page from Kobe’s book: If at first you don’t succeed, SHOOT IT AGAIN and AGAIN and AGAIN …

  • uhh

    NBK

    KOBE is the man you’re jealous you not as good as him so you sit here and rant about him to make yourself feel like more of a man.. bynum is kobes b**** sometimes he listens sometimes he needs to be scolded

  • http://bleacherreport nikita johnson-woods

    I want to give a shout out to the person name “Jaideveon” for giving his post on the game 6 tragedy I too commented on the holier than thou clowns in this world who always talk loud and say nothin’ I love Kobe for his wisdom and high IQ in this game of basketball and I love his supreme being for not following victim to these idiotic opinions people who tend to say sh** that could stop up any toilet!I can not even comment on what the real is because you my friend did it with class and beautiful articulation so anyone who caught a glimpse of your post today kick rocks and get yourself a new player to play on-peace

  • http://www.google.com/imgres?q=brian+scalabrine&um=1&hl=en&sa=N&biw=712&bih=572&tbm=isch&tbnid=paNXJ6FIB-hVJM:&imgrefurl=http://www.2ksports.ca/2012/04/30/brian-scalabr LakeShow

    Kobe’s 2004 Finals>LeBron’s 2011 Finals. Just sayin :)
    I’ll always respect selfishness in the form of trying to win over selflessness in the form of being passive and letting your team mates try to carry you.
    That’s just me though. You guys don’t need to respect that.

  • Ellis

    Anybody that says kobe is more isnterested in scoring than winning really has no clue about what he’s all about. If you looked at the game last night the bigs got touches on the 1st 5 possesions and the lakers were down 13-0! What would you have done in that situation? The bigs have gotten the ball on numerous occasions with mismatches and have done nothing but give the ball back to kobe who with the shot clock winding down has no choice but to shoot a contested shot!

  • PnoyVibe

    JaiDaveon makes most of these comments look illiterate

  • abaci

    speaking of LeBron congrats on his MVP this year

  • PnoyVibe

    ^Well deserved MVP this season

  • lisamarienurse

    Hi fellow fans. Bynum has stated that he is open and he is not given the ball. I was watching for that last night and it looked to be a fact at times, hopefully that will change tonight. If he gets the ball near the net he seems to get it into the net, let’s cheer these guys on tonight, big time. As for Pau, I do beleive he will try his best, he seems to get upset when he is beat up and the referees don’t notice. Let’s all have a positive thought their way tonight, GO LAKERS!!!!

  • http://www.google.com/imgres?q=brian+scalabrine&um=1&hl=en&sa=N&biw=712&bih=572&tbm=isch&tbnid=paNXJ6FIB-hVJM:&imgrefurl=http://www.2ksports.ca/2012/04/30/brian-scalabr LakeShow

    Agreed.

  • http://www.slamonline.com Red

    Asad is the most annoying & unknowable commentator on this site. But yea wait for Slam to post about his MVP tomorrow lol. Bynum’s immaturity is reminiscent of high school. This dude does NOT care that he’s being an idiot. Oh & LBJ did deserve it but he’s still a prick.

  • Terry

    Dagger,
    Come on…both the bigs played like they’d been smoking some high powered herb just before tip off. Sure it matters about touches etc.. but come on man, I didn’t see either of them get aggressive enough or energized enough where the rest of the team would have trusted them all that much with the ball.
    Bynum spends way to much energy on his disinterested facial expressions, while we know that inside he’s really throwing a tantrum every time he’s made to look bad by an opposing player!
    If both these guys played with some real heart, and put some “man” in their hands when handling the ball, we’d forgive them when the ball doesn’t fall, but these guys, especially Bynum, acts like he couldn’t give a rats ass if they’re winning or losing, especially when they’re losing bad…..??? Like he doesn’t have a care in the world!
    I think Kobe and the rest of the team should stick their big size shoes so far up his butt that he chokes, maybe then he’ll start realizing that the games/playoffs/Lakers aren’t all about Andrew Bynum, and that he’s gonna have to pay some dues to get the respect he thinks he deserves!!!!!!

  • bakers’-dozen

    George Karl is outcoaching Mike Brown. The alternating defensive looks he’s throwing at the Lakers have Mike Brown (and his post players) confused. As long as Mozgov doens’t get into early foul trouble, Denver is in good shape. He pushes back on Bynum and doesn’t back down. Bynum doenst’ like to get pushed…makes him frustrated. When he gets frustrated, he throws up bad shots. Then McGee comes in and starts blocking him all over the place. I’m loving it.

  • http://www.cox.com Marilyn

    AHH, it’s lonely at the top…People cheer you on to fame and when you get there they rip and tear at you to bring you down. What creatures we be!!! I say, who cares how the championship is won…They ( LAKERS )will all be the champions when they win. You do what NEEDS to be done to win. If that means the best shooter has to take over the ball to get the job done then thats how it goes down. These other players have chances to make a name for themselves for the postion they are chosen to play. If they don’t play it well…then what other team would pick them. What are they going to tell a new coach..”i’m really a good TEAM player, I just want to have more attention.” PLEASE. Either s#^t or get off the pot. Leave your EGO at your mammas.Your too old for breast feeding.MAN UP!!

  • curtis paggett

    I saw a lot of times in game six Bynum and Hill was open and Kobe took a bad shot Session,Blake,Ebanks and Barns passe up far to many shots.Coach needs to get McRoberts in the game.Lets face it Lakers are better when Kobe shoots less

  • robb

    Kobe tried to get his teammates involved yesterday, but they played like a bunch of cowards, nobody wanted to take a shot, or play any D. It was infuriating to see Kobe playing through gastroenteritis, dehydrated and tired and those two heartless idiots didn’t give a sh*t. After the first minutes of the third quarter I just couldn’t watch anymore.

  • jayrose

    #screwyouguysimgoinghome

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Kobe played with heart, anybody knocking him for his game is nothing but a HATER. Sessions and Barnes was scared to shoot when getting the ball from double teams. Bynum was getting pushed off the block and Pau was just talking jumpshots. No Hustle on Defense. The thing is, Kobe can have a shot at another ring if Bynum plays DEFENSE, control middle and Pau actually tries to post up. BOOK IT!!

  • jlc

    Trade Paul Gasol and get Mark Gasol, Paul aint doing it, is someone banging his girl again????And bynum WTF we should of just kept odom…People complain about kobe but it seem like the rest of the so called team didnt want to do anything with the ball 5-2 second left and they pass it to kobe…

  • http://slamonline.com Allenp

    Lebron had a horrid series against the Mavs but killed the rest of the playoffs. How did Kobe have a better year in 2004? By what measure? Weird comment.

  • Bruce

    Asad:
    Interesting that you should bring up the point that Kobe’s leadership style is modeled after Jordan’s. You’ve watched Kobe enough that it should be obvious that Kobe’s whole game and persona is modeled after Jordan’s. Trouble is that the teams Jordan played on and the teams Kobe has played on were not that similar and didn’t have similar needs.
    While Kobe may have thought he was modeling Mike’s leadership style, Mike did not call out or criticize teammates in the press like Kobe does. I don’t recall him throwing teammates under the bus or blaming them like Kobe has done with Shaq,Bynum,Gasol and others. Mike was concerned with his own game but was not prone to criticize teammates through the press like Kobe. Mike would talk to the teammates in private if he had a problem with them,not embarrass them in public or blame them like Kobe does routinely.
    Mike played on a team certainly as talented as the ones Kobe played on,but very different in makeup of the talent. Mike never played with the top big men in the league on his team. He did play with highly skilled defensive players who were not nearly as skilled offensively as the bigs that Kobe has been gifted with. As a result,it was necessary in order to win for Mike to score a lot of points and he did so. He averaged over 30 points per game,but did so shooting 50% from the field(outstanding for a shooting guard who had to carry a big part of the offensive burden). The other big scorer was Scottie Pippen who was an outstanding defensive player and very athletic,similar in those respects to Mike. The rest of team was mostly role players. Mediocre bigs and players like Rodman,Grant,Kerr etc. who were important players to the team defense and in Kerr’s case a great spot up shooter. Excellent role players and their roles were important to team success.
    Kobe on the other hand had bigs who dominated the paint and were efficient scorers(percentagewise more efficient than Kobe). He scores about 25 points per game but at a 45% rate (slightly above average for a shooting guard,but nothing outstanding). Shaq and Bynum are close to 60% and Gasol mid fifties. No need for Kobe to shoot so much and waste so much clock time and inhibit ball movement like he does. In many games his personal need to be the high scorer actually makes his team less efficient on offense.
    As for the other resemblance to Mike,making scary faces and sticking his jaw and tongue out like Mike does not make him Michael. Yes,Michael is obviously Kobe’s idol,but their teams were different and what Michael did for his team that was not a particularly strong offensive team,especially on the front line is different from what Kobe should have done with the strong front lines he has played with.
    That said,since Michael seems to be your model for Kobe,Michael though his style fit his team,was not one of the great team players I’ve seen either. He took care of his business which enhanced team success with the team he was on. As team players who created team unity with their style of play and personality,I consider guys like Bird,Duncan,Magic,Kareem and Russell to be superior to both Michael and Kobe. They encouraged and supported teammates and didn’t need the limelight as much as Kobe and Michael. I seldom saw their teams lose games because they missed inadvisable shots. Kobe has many games where in trying to pad stats he snatches defeat from the jaws of victory. Michael not so much,but I’ve seen him do it too.

  • Kareem

    Bruce, comment more often. You’ve got great points.

  • Everynowhere

    @allenp he said 2004 Nba finals. Also it amazes me how laker fans can just block out the 2004 finals. Kobe has gotten much better and less selfish as of late but don’t pretend he isn’t the biggest reason why they lost against Detroit. Phil Jackson just loves throwing around the word “uncoachable” to all his players.

  • Everynowhere

    @bruce you need to take your hater glasses off. Don’t pretend that Kobe didn’t lead his team to back 2 back chips. Kobe haters can be just as ridiculous as his fans. The fans ignore all his faults while the haters ignore his accomplishments hahaha. I’m gonna miss Kobe when he retires…

  • Bob

    Kobe played well, but the image that he wants to acknowledge about him is his greatness. MJ, Magic, Bird, etc were greats because they LED their teams, they wouldn’t accept what is happening right now. LA needs a group sports psychologist. I say Kobe is right about having the mindset to be above what the other man can do, that is the champions mindset. However, you have to instill that in your teammates. For example, Byron Scott was not an exceptional talent, he was good. In the framework of the Showtime Lakers, he learned what it took to be a champion from Magic. That whole team played as one, and were confident that no one could beat them when they played the they should. Now, Byron has taken teams to the Finals and has the ability to teach champion fundamentals (which are different from fundamentals)

  • http://Slamonline.com nbk

    Asad fu*k you you don’t know sh*t a$shole

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

    That was the kind of Corey Brewer DALLAS would love to have back… : )

  • http://kb24.com Bigi

    “ALL I SAID I LIKED THE PEN…”

  • Bruce

    Everynowhere:
    You are right to an extent. I don’t personally hate Kobe,but I do hate the kind of team and brand of basketball that is the product of Kobe’s individual needs. Believe me,Kobe is more about individual attention than he is about winning or team basketball. Put him on a team with dominating bigs and he’s a “champion” and a “competitor” which is the image he projects. Put him with average players and he is Pete Maravich,Allen Iverson or World B Free. His stats(other than shooting percentage) will be off the charts,but he’s stuck in the first round of the playoffs at best. He’s amazing in individual talent(no one can dispute that),but my point with Kobe is that his personality and need for individual attention and “greatness” trump even his desire to win titles. The end result is teammates can win,but they don’t thrive when playing with Kobe. The “nut cases” like World Peace and Bynum go extra crazy because Kobe doesn’t take the time to develop a real relationship. While I think World Peace respects Kobe,I think Bynum resents him and it affects his play. I can’t help but laugh at Bynum taking that three point shot and telling everyone to go to he–. Think about it,Kobe who has made about 30% of them this year takes them at will and no one has the guts to complain. Sure there is a difference,Kobe makes some important ones and makes them,but he also takes them with 20 point leads to pad his stats when he should either be on the bench or helping other teammates develop confidence by setting them up.
    For all his zaniness,Rodman was always productive with the Bulls and accepted his role,because of his respect for Mike and Phil. He was not dysfunctional at times like Bynum,World Peace while playing with Mike,although he was when with other teams at times. As for guys like Duncan,Magic,Russell,and Kareem,I cannot remember players rebelling against them or being dysfunctional around them like they are when being around Kobe for any length of time. World Peace and Bynum are simply being themselves,but Kobe’s behavior(the whining on every call he gets or doesn’t get,playing for himself,posturing for the press while criticizing teammates) sets a tone that makes it more natural for World Peace and Bynum to do what they do.
    You can’t be “do as I say,not as I do” if you want to be a real leader,you have to be a leader at all times.Compare Kobe to true leaders like Duncan(yes he does complain about calls,but never downs teammates),Magic,Russell,Bird and Kareem. You never saw their teammates being resentful toward them or dysfunction occurring around them like you have seen with Kobe’s teammates through the years. They won and got their attention through team play and team building,not individual greatness although they were and are truly great. You don’t have to score 30 points per game to be great,Russell and Magic didn’t even average 20 ppg during their careers,but they were great teammates. Kobe is not. He is individually great but not an asset to enhancing the abilities of teammates.

  • Malama

    The Lakers need TWO balls: One for Kobe and one for Kobe’s EGO

  • tyler

    @ asad are you serious your last comment made no sense, jordan did make his teammates better? he brought the best out of each one of them horace grant, scottie pippen, tony kukoc, b.j. armstrong, bill cartwright, all thrived with jordan on defense and offense hell ron harper even rejuvanated his career when he joined the bulls just like bynum gasol odom fisher ariva smush parker kobe brought out the best in them and not to mention ariza big fat contract from houston

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Bruce
    you are an idiot, obivously you need to learn more about MJ, MJ wanted scoring titles and tried to average 30 a game on purpose. Kobe is not a leader because Bynum and Pau don’t work on Defense and post moves get shut down sometimes and are not willing to work. Kobe got his team to 3 straight Finals and won back to back and could have had a 3peat if Gasol step up, but Kobe is not a Leader, MJ is not the Leader everyone acts like he was. Pippen wanted to leave, some of his teammates hated him, Grant left because of him and MJ, never game Pippen credit until after he was don playing, to HOW MUCH PIPPEN WAS IMPORTANT TO ALL OF HIS RINGS. MJ DID not win a ring without PIPPEN, Folks and MJ never played with a dominate BIG, so his field goal percentage will be higher, he was the BULLS best POST PLAYER. MJ gets all the love and is the same player as KOBE. ONLY dummies think Kobe doesn’t care about winning. No Bull ever RESENTED MJ getting all the attention and he acted like he always won by himself, man I watched every Bulls game growing up, He was different in how he dealt with people, Rodman stated he never talked to MJ, So how did MJ lead Rodman. MJ GreatNESS is overblown, like he always trusted his teammates and made every right play. NOPE, Duncan complains and cries about every call. Also Ginobli is the lynchpin to those rings along with Parker. Parker was named FInals MVP. If San Antino wins again, Parker will have two FINALS MVP. Kobe has made players look better, Shannon Brown and Ariza got better under Kobe, they have said it and Bynum talks about how he is motivated by Bryant’s greatness and Pau was not consider one of the best skilled big man in the league until getting to the Lakers. BOOK IT!!

  • Bruce

    Seed:
    I don’t think you will see anywhere in my post that I said MJ was a great leader,but the evidence is there that the players who played with MJ knew and fulfilled their roles very well. I give Phil a lot of credit for that,but they obviously respected MJ in that they accepted the secondary roles because they had confidence in Michael and Phil. Scottie who was the second main scoring force on that team got enough shots to average 20 or close to it points while playing with Michael. I don’t think his percentage was as high as Mike’s but it was probably higher than Kobe’s while he played with Mike. It may or may not have been higher in the years he played without Mike.The point is Mike had no bigs who were a scoring threat anywhere near Gasol and Shaq. Bynum is a threat too although he has been limited somewhat by his immaturity and Kobe’s need to dominate the offense.
    As for Mike,when you shoot over 50% from the field(i.e. Mike,Bynum,Gasol and Shaq) it is a positive for your team if you take enough shots to score 30 points and people who do that should be the first option on offense. No team averages near 50% from the field. Having big men who can score should help take the pressure off the shooting guard and should help the shooting guard get better shots and thus a higher percentage. Mike never had that advantage,Kobe has had it about 14 years out of his 16 year career. Instead of utilizes his bigs,Kobe has competed with them to be team scoring leader rather than taking advantage of
    how those bigs could make things way easier for everyone. In real world basketball you take the highest percentage shots you can get. Kobe’s lifetime fg% is 45%(43% this year),if you match that with the seasons he has played,I’M pretty sure you will find his fg% is below the Laker team average most seasons. Do you really want the guy whose fg% is below the team average taking way more shots than the guys making over half their shots? Do you want a guy shooting 43% trying to win a scoring championship at the expense of team unity and performance?
    I don’t know if Michael was out to win scoring championships or not and it is irrelevant if you are making 50% of your shots. Scoring 30 points a game is a good thing if you shoot a percentage that high because you are not taking shots away from more efficient players. On the other hand,if you are shooting 43% and scoring 28 points per game it’s not the most efficient use of your offensive possessions. For comparison Durant and LeBron both were over 50%(highest on their respective teams) and Durant scored slightly more than Kobe and LeBron who took the least shots was within one point of both of them.
    Lastly,real leadership doesn’t come from scoring a lot of points(i.e. Duncan,Magic,Russell,Fisher). It comes from having the welfare of others and the team first. Teammates can pick up on that. They will perform when they have confidence in their leaders. An atmosphere of drama and dysfunction exists when you try to lead by calling out and dissing teammates through the press. Do you think Tim Duncan really cares if Ginobili or Parker gets more ink as long as the Spurs win? Kobe in the past has shown he would rather lose than let Shaq get a 4th finals MVP and win? He almost lost another title(lucky for him Perkins was injured) in 2010 when he insisted on chucking up 6 for 24 in the deciding game and Gasol and Ron World Peace bailed him out with their defense and clutch play .
    In the end there are two things that win titles. Those two are talent and team play and attitude. Talent can overcome a lot of things(even Kobe ball hogging),but team play is even better because it is more consistent and you can rely on it more. Given the amount of talent Kobe has had on his teams,five titles in 15 seasons isn’t all that impressive. When you get talent and team play utilized to maximize everyone’s skills you have done the best you can do. Kobe still thinks he can do it by himself, and that is not the ticket.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    ^^^^SO all the talent Bird and Magic and MJ had isn’t that impressive too right. Magic and Bird played with 3 or more HoFAmers and MJ played with 2 or more HoFamers. Kobe has played with 1 HoFamers and Pau is a borderline Hall of Famer. Check it. BOOK IT!!

  • Royalty KT

    Kobe’s Godly gifts, gruling work eithics and his will to win has enabled him to accomplish just about every individual or team award the game of basketball has offer in his 16 years of service.

  • Malama

    Game seven: To prove my point, when Kobe lets everybody play WE WIN. Even Harrington said it in a post game interview after the Denver loss…………

  • Bruce

    Malama:
    You are right on the money. The Lakers play their best basketball(any team does)when the basketball and the players are moving and all of the players are involved. People get open shots and even Kobe himself said,these guys are pros. Any pro should make those shots. The bigs were more aggressive,but the biggest change of all for the Lakers was that Kobe took what was given to him and in my memory,not once in the whole game do I remember him not having one possession when he sat on the ball and overdribbled or pump faked on the perimeter to get a one on one move while open teammates stood around watching him,killing the possession for the Lakers. He didn’t always have a pass leading directly to a basket,but he openly and willingly made the quick,safe pass that led to another pass that started the ball movement that eventually led to a basket. He played smart basketball and played to win rather than to be the top scorer as he most often does. One other thing Kobe did to win was to switch defensively onto Ty Lawson when Ty was destroying the Lakers in the comeback. Ty was pretty much shut down for the rest of the game,allowing the Lakers to come back and win.
    Kobe actually was a leader by example in what an untrained basketball fan(many Kobe lovers fit that description)would say was a bad game for Kobe because he only scored 17 points on 7 for 16 shooting,but his willingness to follow the game plan and to accept a lesser role and involve teammates was a big key to victory. If Kobe had done what Kobe often does and tried to outscore Denver by himself, there is no doubt in my mind that the Nuggets would have taken the resulting turnovers and missed shots and run them down the Lakers throats for easy baskets. Indeed the beginning of the Denver comeback was Kobe getting a layup blocked and Denver running it back for an easy basket and right after that a turnover by Kobe that led to another Denver fast break bucket. After that,Kobe went back to team basketball mode and being a part of a good team offense where everyone participated.
    One telling statement after the game by Mike Brown was that he and Gasol had a conversation between games when Brown told Gasol to be aggressive(not that he needed to,Gasol is one of the most intelligent players in the NBA,as is Kobe by the way although kobe often doesn’t use that intelligence in the team concept) and to set picks for Kobe and if Kobe waves him off,to ignore Kobe and do it anyway. Kind of a subtle telling piece of advice to not be passive and stand aside while Kobe tries to control the game and run his own offense. The results were great.

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