Wednesday, February 6th, 2013 at 11:35 am  |  6 responses

Kobe Bryant Urges NBA Stars to Be More Active With Players Union

The NBPA lies in shambles, and that in part has to do with the star players’ laissez-faire attitude. It’s time for that change, according to Kobe Bryant. The Los Angeles Lakers superstar admits that he’s also guilty of being too hands-off with the union, and that all players must now take a more active role. Per the NY Times: “Kobe Bryant, acknowledging that the union ‘looks like a mess,’ said it was time for the N.B.A.’s stars to take a stronger role as players deliberate the fate of Billy Hunter, the embattled executive director, and the direction of the union. Bryant, the Los Angeles Lakers star, included himself in that mandate and said it was an issue he had been discussing with Chris Paul, the Los Angeles Clippers guard, since the 2011 lockout. ‘We might want to grab the bull by its horns, so to speak, and lead the charge a little bit,’ Bryant said Tuesday morning. At the time of the lockout, Paul was the only All-Star on the union’s executive committee, which was otherwise stocked with bench players and players out of the league. The committee has since lapsed into virtual irrelevance, with seven of the nine seats open, because the union has not held an election amid infighting between Hunter and Derek Fisher, the committee’s president. [...] Asked if suspending Hunter was the right call, Bryant said, ‘I think so.’ But he declined to make any public judgment on Hunter’s fate, saying he had yet to digest the 469-page audit. ‘I don’t know where that’s going,’ he said. ‘I haven’t spoken to Derek to get any insight and see what he knows from his vantage point of what’s going on. But it just looks like a mess right now.’ The players union has a history of deep involvement by its star players, from Isiah Thomas to Patrick Ewing and Alonzo Mourning. But the leadership jobs — both at the executive committee and player representative level — have generally fallen to the league’s middle class for the last 10 years. Bryant named himself, Paul and Kevin Durant — ‘the guys who are the face of the league’ — as stars who needed to take a greater role now.”

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  • magicfan94

    He didn’t mention LeBron… Wow lol

  • danpowers

    bron is a bright basketball player but based on his interviews, quotes and behavior it is quite save to say that he aint that bright off the court. he better lets the other do negotiations and he isnt really under nba rules anyway. he wouldnt even have any money worries if he would play under the minimum and he doesnt even get called like others (travels, flops, etc). leave the king out of this lol

  • LeroyShonuff

    Lebron has a great team around him but as an individual nothing about him says leadership and nothing is wrong with that.

  • michael

    lebrons got the greatest basketball iq- but he didnt finish high school . nor did kobe- but kobe is highly intelligent. listening to him speak for 2 seconds gives u that impression. the union needs players who are articulate and mature- and can negotiate on behalf of a league against lawyers , owners and commisioners. paul is a very good communicater, and would be successful as a coach after his career. perfect for union leader. the reason why point guards are coaches isnt just because theyre used to being coaches on the floor- but often because theyre smart, period. it amuses me when guys like ewing and parish want to coach and dont understand why- and its cos noone has the heart to tell them. you re too dumb to coach, and you dont speak well enough.

  • Happy

    WTF are you talking about? They both graduated high school.

  • Happy

    Kobe specifically excluded Lebron when talking about guys who are the “faces of the league”. Regardless of how any of you feel about his leadership potential, Lebron is THE face of the league, then there’s everybody else. Kobe was just being his usual jealous self taking shots.