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Wednesday, February 13th, 2013 at 10:05 am  |  71 responses

Mike D’Antoni Says Kobe Bryant Passed Too Much


In an awful, disjointed performance against the Phoenix Suns last night, Kobe Bryant took the “Magic Mamba” thing a little too far. Bryant forced passes all game long, and racked up 9 assists to go along with 8 turnovers. Kobe also managed to hit just a single field goal. Los Angeles Lakers head coach Mike D’Antoni talked about his superstar’s over-eagerness to pass the rock, a concept that remains difficult to wrap one’s head around. Per the LA Daily News: “He passed up wide open looks. Bryant threw passes to teammates not expecting the ball. He finished in what became his lowest-scoring game since his second NBA season with four points on 1 of 8 shooting and eight turnovers. Yet, the Lakers still beat the Phoenix Suns, 91-85, Tuesday at Staples Center in what marked their eighth win in the past 11 games. [...] ‘I thought it was great, actually,’ said an upbeat Bryant, who had nine assists. ‘Obviously, scoring four points and going one for eight isn’t necessarily a recipe for success. But I think the important thing is that we just moved the ball.’ [...] ‘He was trying too hard to get everybody else involved,’ Lakers coach Mike D’Antoni said. ‘You have to walk the fine line. He went way over the other line. He has to get back to the middle where he facilitates and is aggressive and it flows that way.’ Bryant’s been tackling this role for the past 11 games by becoming the team’s floor general while Steve Nash has morphed into a defacto shooting guard. Bryant’s averaged 8.27 assists during that stretch, ranking just behind Boston’s Rajon Rondo (11.1 assists), the Clippers’ Chris Paul (9.5) and New Orlean’s Greivis Vasquez (9.4). But Bryant’s facilitating hardly looked smooth against Phoenix. ‘Once every 17 years, I guess he’s allowed that,’ D’Antoni said. ‘I wouldn’t be too tough on him.’”
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  • Happy

    Not saying it’s a recipe for long term success but they still won the game. Forced passes create turnovers just as forced shots create turnovers. The biggest difference is that when Kobe forces shots all game they tend to lose.

  • Caboose

    Wow. Of things most unlikely to be said, this has to be up there along with:
    -Careful Tim, you were yelling at the refs too much that game.
    -Hey Glen, I think you should try adding a couple of pounds.
    -Bynum’s recovery is progressing faster than expected.
    -I scouted this kid called Marion and really liked his shooting form.

  • spit hot fiyah

    of topic, but since he is mentioned here, greivis Vazquez in a landslide for MIP right?

  • Caboose

    Vucevic, Kemba, and Mayo are all also contenders. My preseason pick was Greivis, but it’s hard to pass up Nik. Dude’s gone from 6-5 on 45% shooting to 13-12 on 52% shooting.

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

    Kobe’s in an odd situation. Since we can agree that his mental makeup is similar to MJ, I’m left wondering what ’98 Jordan would have done in a similar situation as the one Kobe faces with this team. Would have changed his game to be a facilitator, or would he have kept shooting?

    The equivalent for Jordan would have been, in ’98, playing with David Robinson (Dwight’s not Shaq) and a John Stockton on his team. Throw in there Rik Smiths (Gasol) and a past-his-prime defensive player, and you are left wondering how Jordan would handle it.

    I think Kobe has done a great job facilitating, but yesterday, he was a disaster. And he needs to stop doing those damn jump passes to Dwight…they have 0% chemistry together in those situations.

  • ATL dynamite

    Can the passage be in paragraphs…? Please?

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Mike-Gilbert/100001749589586 Mike Gilbert

    -Mark, as their owner you need to show a little more enthusiasm when you go to Mavericks games

  • Marty Susman

    I’m sorry, I could care less what this worthless example of a coach like Mike says…. Here is the guy who was the wrong man, at the wrong time, for the wrong team telling one of the greatest players in the history of the game what & how to play….. This guy isa joke, just look at him during the game itself & look at that face who has zero clue whats going on…

  • shutup

    This was probably one of Kobe’s spiteful passing games; were he shows that if he isn’t taking shots the team can’t win. Kobe passing doesn’t work if he isn’t attacking. The formula for them winning is him shooting about 15 shots per game and getting roughly 20 points while dishing 7-9 assists. So in other words D’Antoni might be right; but a better headline would be “Kobe Bryant made too many bad passes”

  • http://www.facebook.com/rainman1991 Saleem Rainman

    dude is BALLING. But Jrue is up there, and there was another candidate that the media is pushing down our throats. The names running from me right now though, lol

  • http://www.facebook.com/rainman1991 Saleem Rainman

    lol shut up. Kobe riders cant handle ANY criticism of the dude, EVEN when its completely warranted. Kobe played like ass. go cry yourself to sleep now.

  • shutup

    So now were going to make excuses for Kobe; because his teammates are too good? GTFOH. Jordan made people around him better, something Kobe has never done. Horace Grant played very similar to Pau Gasol, or Toni Kukoc would be the equivalent. If Jordan won with Bill Wennington, or Luc Longley playing with Dwight would not have been a problem, any more excuses you want to offer up?

  • http://www.facebook.com/rainman1991 Saleem Rainman

    Mike. Dude. Grow a pair. Plz. You talk about the need to walk a fine line between shooting too much and being too passive, and you’ve got the PERFECT player that understands when he needs to shoot and when he needs to pass on your team .He also happens to be one of the Greatest floor generals and passers of all time, and made your system look amazing.Kobe has hardly ever shown an ability to recognize when he is shooting too much, and same goes now with his passing. Its always extreme, one side or another. Im basically pleading that you get the ball into Nash’s hands a lot more. Grow a pair and tell Kobe he needs to defer at least a bit to Nash, because dude has been good as of late.

  • RayJr

    Shoots too much. Passes too much. Hey they won so I’ll take it.

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

    ?

    At what point did I say that Kobe shouldn’t be blamed because his teammates are too good?

    I said he’s in an odd situation compared to the rest of his career – which he is. The point of the post was not to defend Kobe, it was to start a discussion on how an older Jordan would have handled similar circumstances given their mental makeup as being scorers, top dogs, etc.

    I forgot that people start losing their sh*t the moment you utter Jordan’s name on this board, whether negatively or neutrally as I did here.

  • Max

    -Lebron, please make a shot.
    -And Dwight, please tell us how you are feeling.

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

    Man, that Greg Oden kid is made of iron – he never gets injured!

  • Caboose

    -Jimmer has a much better future than JJ Redick!
    -You need to fake a bit more contact Wade, the refs won’t give you calls if you always stay on your feet.

  • christianbullen

    James harden?..

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    Kobe played horrible last night. He REFUSED to shoot in the first half. To the point where he passed up 3 really really high % shots (2 of which were literally lay-ups) for trying to get assists that lead to turnovers all in the last 2 minutes of the first half.
    .
    And then, when he did start shooting, he shot 7 HORRIBLE shots. All extremely contested. None very late in the clock.
    .
    Whatever message Kobe was sending last night missed the mark, and missed it badly.

  • Max

    -Blake you gotta try and dunk the ball!

  • robb

    JaVale, you’re thinking too much

  • http://twitter.com/Jzakoni Sanchez

    lol winner

  • http://twitter.com/Jzakoni Sanchez

    i was at the game yesterday. it was a pretty bad live.

  • http://twitter.com/Jzakoni Sanchez

    preach!

  • Max

    Lol, maybe that’s the problem with him.
    -Mozgov, you can’t just get out of the way, try and block him!

  • AQWORD

    funny but Marion was known as a sharp shooter in ju co.

  • Caboose

    My favorite so far.

  • AQWORD

    @caboose – Kobe – Wer’e going to make love now.

  • AQWORD

    + Kobe – You will never be like Bron no matter how hard you try. :-)

  • Caboose

    True, but that shooting form has NEVER looked pretty.

  • LP

    This wont be the first time KOBE has overpassed against Phoenix….Please remember ~6 years ago when he gave up against Phoenix, i dont even think he took a shot in the 4th quarter….

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

    What was the general feeling within the crowd about his performance?

    There was a period at the end of the 2nd quarter where he tried to force two passes in to (I believe) Jamison and Dwight for no reason. It was weird I mean, its good to trust your teammates and get them involved, but not to the point where you take away from your own game to that degree.

    Clearly, not getting himself going in the first half led to terrible shot selection the second half. PHX also were better equipped to defend his jump passes by that point.

    8 turnovers!! Jeremy Lin numbers.

  • http://www.facebook.com/chris.callihan1 Chris Callihan

    Well, you made that guy look like an idiot

  • Zabbah

    “Bryant’s been tackling this role for the past 11 games by becoming the team’s floor general while Steve Nash has morphed into a defacto shooting guard.”

    That line. Never woulda expected to read that when they got nash and dwight during the off season.

  • http://twitter.com/Jzakoni Sanchez

    ummm to sum it up. a fan next to me said…. “before, we used to have bad games… now we hardly have good games”

    some people said they wanted refunds.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    he was?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    i think the main difference between Jordan and Bryant was the level of respect from their teammates. Kobe is viewed as a Diva by a lot of guys. Jordan was viewed as a villain at worst. A villain you treat with an unrivaled level of respect.
    .
    Basically, Dwight wouldn’t have had the nuts to quit on Jordan. Because Jordan wouldn’t have said anything to the media, he would have destroyed Dwight in practice until the only thing he could do was fight back.
    .
    You should listen to the stories from like Steve Kerr and those guys about how Jordan treated his teammates in practice. Nobody got off easy. With Bryant, he seems to be demanding of his teammates only when people are watching.

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

    Reason # 546466 why I love Slam: Random commenter creativity.

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

    Andre Blatche, you need to get out more. You gotta have a life outside of basketball.

  • uqk

    kobe tryin to make a point: if he didn’t shoot….the team will lose,
    (he’s done it before…not exactly remember when)
    but that didn’t happen right :D

    So in that particular game….take kobe off lakers…along with 1-8 shooting & turnovers, lakers is better without kobe…am i right?

  • Caboose

    -Luke Walton with a dunk.
    -Mike Brown outcoached -insert any other name here-.
    -Eddy Curry does not have a room in his house entirely dedicated to Twinkie storage.

  • Caboose

    Ditto for you too, Baron Davis.

  • Caboose

    A sharp shooter at a JC is like the principal of a home school.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    no it isn’t. JC’s have a higher volume of better shooters then most D-1 schools. As those are typically the guys that were not athletic enough to play the D-1 level.

    .

    For instance, http://stats.njcaa.org/sports/mbkb/2012-13/div1/players?pos=sg&sort=fgpt3

    .
    to be a sharp shooter at the CC level (at least now a days) you have to literally be one of the best shooter’s in the country.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Junior-Taylor/100003121138419 Junior Taylor

    You must have not seen DRob in his prime. It’s not even a comparison between the two.

  • Caboose

    That actually does make sense…

  • whooo!

    If they lost, people would still find ways to blame this on Gasol, Dwight, Nash, or the coach. All they’re talking about on LA radio about this game is ragging on Dwight! LA fans really are living in a strange bubble.

  • AQWORD

    hmmmm. yes

  • AQWORD

    it got him to the NBA & winning a title. Something that alot of college players predicted to achieve great things havent done.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Junior-Taylor/100003121138419 Junior Taylor

    The thing with Kobe is that he takes everything to the extreme. He either shoots till his arms fall off or he overpasses. The same can be said about his fans and detractors. To his fans, he’s the GOAT and to his detractors, he’s overrated.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    *whispers* i was one of those people – which is why i know this about the state of juco. because i’m one of the best shooters on earth lol.

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    you got any links to that info or anything like that? i would love to read that scouting report

  • http://www.facebook.com/Brill86 Andrew Woods

    Kobe, white women in Colorado love rough sex.

  • Caboose

    He shot under 30% from 3 at UNLV. I doubt he was known as much of a sharpshooter.

  • Max

    SLAM, will you please stop using all those paragraphs!

  • shutup

    That’s exactly what I’m talking about, when I mention Kobe’s spiteful passing games/halves.

  • Coca Scola

    LOLL the Wade one had me dead.

  • Dutch Rich

    -Does it hurt, Vince?

  • http://twitter.com/sooperfadeaway nbk

    that sounds more likely. it’s hard for me to believe a coach at any level would consider Shawn Marion a sharp shooter.

  • shutup

    Because you always defend Kobe, your just trying to get more creative at it by drawing silly comparisons to situations that don’t equate. Kobe is in the same situation he has been his entire career, he just doesn’t have fail safes for his B$, ie Shaq, Derrick Fisher, or Phil Jackson. How is having Dwight and Pau that much different from Bynum and Pau?

  • Happy

    I remember. It was against the Kings in either ’03 or ’04 when he was tired of Shaq and Phil talking about him being a ball hog.

  • Caboose

    Nice.

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

    Dude, just because I comment on Kobe-related articles, does not mean I always defend him. Hell, even within this one article, I’ve criticized him multiple times.This leads me to believe that you don’t really read what I say and jump to your own conclusions.

    In this case specifically, there is nothing to defend – he was obviously horrible, and pretty much everyone knows that. I was offering up a parallel comparison because I thought it would be an interesting discussion.

  • shutup

    So he had a terrible game and you decided it was the platform for an poorly thought out analogy. Comparing Jordan playing with D.Rob and Rik Smits, obv your trying show that Jordan would have struggled if he played with two offensive big men or some such asinine conclusion; but you forget Jordan made his teams better, something Kobe could and will never do (sans the little streak from this season)

    Your opening sentence has one compliment for Kobe and one built in excuse for Kobe’s bad season. “Kobe’s in an odd situation. Since we can agree that his mental makeup is similar to MJ(COMPLIMENT/ although not completely accurate), I’m left wondering what ’98 Jordan would have done in a similar situation as the one Kobe faces with this team.”<——reeks of the "situation" not being Kobe's fault. See why I came to the conclusion that you defend Kobe no matter what?????

    I don't mind people bringing Jordan's name into discussions, but it gets a little crazy when you compare one aspect of a personality and think they are the same. Kobe isn't and will never be half the leader Jordan was, and that's just the most glaring flaw in your theory.

    To end your "discussion" Jordan won with less so it's stupid to think he wouldn't have won with more. Put DRob on that Bulls team they probably win 8-10 chips.

  • KBM

    Too good.

  • KBM

    If you can’t comprehend the saying “I couldn’t care less” and it’s ur opening line, do you think ppl are going to be more or less inclined to believe that you make sense?

  • Caboose

    That’s a damn good comment.

  • z

    U really truly are a dumbass. That is all

  • shutup

    Thank you for your insightful input, have a nice day…….

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

    You have way too much time on your hands.

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