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Friday, February 8th, 2013 at 9:10 am  |  20 responses

Kobe Bryant Denies Pressuring Dwight Howard to Play


After his open and very public pressuring of Dwight Howard to fight through injuries and play, which seemed to have worked despite Dwight’s objections, Kobe Bryant spent much of the day and night denying that he had indeed pressured his embattled teammate. No one believes it, but here’s Kobe backpedaling. Per Yahoo! Sports: “On his way out of the Garden, out of a humiliating 116-95 loss to the Boston Celtics, Bryant returned a clichéd question – ‘Are Dwight and you on the same page?’ – without a clichéd response. With a bemused face and a shrug, Bryant said: ‘What page is there to be on? Defend. Rebound…’ He shrugged again. ‘I mean, what else is on the page?’ [...] Nevertheless, Bryant reached out to Howard early on Thursday to diffuse the drama, he said. He fired off a text message to insist that a part of his interview with the great Boston sportswriter, Jackie MacMullan, had been misconstrued in the public eye. Bryant swore he wasn’t calling out Howard about sitting three straight games with a shoulder injury, that he wasn’t questioning his toughness. ‘Listen, I really think people ran in the wrong direction with those quotes,’ Bryant said. ‘And I think that put Dwight on the defense, put him a little on edge. But that wasn’t the intention, nor the purpose. I didn’t say anything earth-shattering. I didn’t say anything I haven’t been saying all year. Honestly, I didn’t take a run at him.’”

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  • Jay cutler

    He’s a liar. Plain and simple everyone can read his words for themselves

    Even Kobe slurpers know what ” We can wait for dwights shoulder to heal “means

  • spit hot fiyah

    whoever on these comments came up with the idea to gather all the lakers articles everyday under one single post was a genius. or maybe gather them for each week and sell it as an e-book

  • lex

    by by Dwight

  • https://twitter.com/Wayne__o BuenoWayno1

    Bryant : ‘What page is there to be on? Defend. Rebound…’ He shrugged”… translation- Shut up n rebound while I shoot fadeaway jumpers when being doubled and play uninspired D.

  • Caboose

    Lying Kobe is lying.

  • http://twitter.com/apowellAdvocate Allen Powell II

    We all noticed that “score” wasn’t in the equation, right? Really boss? You have at worst the second best scoring big in the League, and you say “Defend and Rebound”? Yes, Howard should be doing those things but you don’t say that’s his role.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    When losing is happening all around you, desperation kicks in, and even the smallest of issues become magnified. This is the case with this whole Dwight Kobe fiasco. I’m sure they don’t always see eye-to-eye, but this isn’t a Shaq/Kobe situation where there is actual venom and hatred…just a clash of mentalities.

    Like JA Adande insinuated, the difference is simply the clashing mentalities between a player on his last breath trying to stay relevant and win rings, while another is trying to just set up the defining years of his career. Kobe is not going to win this battle. The Lakers aren’t going to win sh*t this year – and even the fiercest of competitors has to sense that looming.

  • Max

    Shutup allready Kobe.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    I’ll take credit for that!

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    Yeah really…the guy needs to stop talking about teammates to the media. That didn;t work well for him with Shaq, Bynum, or Pau, and it sure as hell won’t work for someone as sensitive and confused as Dwight tends to be.

    Keep your thoughts to yourself if they aren’t positive, or even better, sort it out in person. I’m always confused when players say things to the media that they could easily tell a teammate by themselves in a private moment.

    Calling yourself tough for fighting through injuries while also suggesting, however coyly, that Dwight’s not used to playing through pain isn’t something that Kobe should be doing given the emotional fragility of the team.

    Kobe’s method of leadership has always been to lead by example and crack the whip so to speak. It works wonderfully on younger players like Shannon Brown, Earl Clark, or Vujacic, but seasoned superstar vets like Dwight don’t take too kindly to the “this is how I do it, so you should too” method that Kobe boasts about.

  • KevinJohnsonFan

    Dwight should never look like just another dude on the floor. That’s exactly what he looks like in LA. Sometimes forget he’s even out there.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    I think the injuries play a big part in that. Even when he was “healthy” this season, he was still recovering from his back surgery so he looked lethargic at times – his lift and explosiveness are not there yet.

    He’ll be back next year – he needs the summer off. However it won’t be in a Laker uniform with the way this is going.

  • Max

    Yeah man, it must be awkward saying things to the media and than seeing that person at practice or at the game or where ever.

  • Josh Hinkle

    Kobe’s ego being an issue is a startling new development

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=509819249 Gaurav P.

    Based on stuff he’s said, its pretty blatant that Kobe respects Pau as an offensive post player way more than Dwight. He truly seems to believe that Dwight would be better off in a Tyson Chandler role while he and Pau and Nash carry the offense.

    This should end well.

  • KevinJohnsonFan

    This entire season he’s just been another guy out there with Kobe. Part of the reason why I don’t understand why Kobe would talk about Dwight playing through injury is because he’s been playing with a bad back all season. Remember before the season people were saying he was going to miss the first month if not more. It’s not just the injuries. It’s also playing with Kobe. He’s not the greatest guy to play with if you’re a star player and need/want the ball. Nash can’t be having too much fun either. I’d be more than shocked if Dwight signs with them. He looked indifferent last night. A lot will have to change for him to return. I’m not sure Kobe wants him to and I think Dwight would be making a bad decision for himself if he did decide to return. I go back to that phone conversation last year where Kobe told Dwight he could be his Tyson Chandler. That’s all he sees in the best center in basketball? Crazy.

  • Tonya (Laker for Life)

    As a Laker (Kobe and Dwight) fan, I think Kobe is damned no matter what he say. He is a player who wants nothing but the best for his team and that included Dwight. Now if he is a lying or a jerk. He is just a frustrated player as anyone would be who is competitive and has no idea what to do next. We all hope and pray that one day soon the Lakers will find their way back to the winners circle. I love you Kobe keep playing and Dwight keep taking care of yourself so you can be an asset to the Lakers.

  • http://twitter.com/apowellAdvocate Allen Powell II

    We all know that’s why Dwight wanted out of Orlando. This is looking really bad.

  • http://twitter.com/AjpDos Allen Powell

    Before I saw this was a lady I was deeply disturbed.

  • Interdico Scriptor

    It’s not… It’s LakeShow in drag. NOW THAT is disturbing!!!

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