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Friday, August 16th, 2013 at 9:45 am  |  35 responses

Kobe Bryant Unsure About Playing in Season Opener


Kobe Brryant may be very confident about his rehab from surgery on his torn Achilles tendon, but despite the optimism from some corners in Laker-land, Bryant still isn’t certain he’ll suit up on Opening Night. Per the AP: “Kobe Bryant isn’t sure he’ll be ready to play when the Los Angeles Lakers open the season on Oct. 29, although he remains ahead of schedule in rehabbing his surgically repaired Achilles’ tendon. Bryant turns 35 next week and he vowed that his 17-year career is ‘definitely not over.’ … ‘I just want that jewelry,’ he said, referring to the possibility of claiming his sixth NBA championship. ‘People just don’t understand how obsessed I am with winning.’ Bryant made his comments to late night host Jimmy Kimmel during ‘Kobe Up Close,’ a one-on-one conversation with the NBA superstar on Thursday night at Nokia Theatre across from Staples Center. He had a one-word answer when Kimmel asked whether he would finish his career with the only team he’s ever played for: ‘Yeah,’ Bryant replied. The 7,100-seat venue was full of Bryant’s fans that cheered, jeered and interrupted freely during the one-hour program. Ticket proceeds benefited the Kobe and Vanessa Bryant Family Foundation, which works to help end homelessness. In keeping with the reason for the event, Kimmel asked, ‘If there was only one homeless person in the world, would you be happy if it was Dwight Howard?’ The audience roared, mere weeks removed from Howard’s decision to leave the Lakers for Houston after one season. ‘Dwight is a great kid,’ Bryant said, nearly drowned out by boos. ‘We have different perspectives on what it takes to win.’”

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  • JibbsIsBallin

    Kimmel is so funny. Way to play that off professionally Kobe.

  • Ben Ireland

    That Dwight answer is nice, I’m glad he’s not throwing Dwight under the bus. But you know he’s gonna do everything in his power to drop 50 on the Rockets. Hope he’s back when he’s ready, don’t rush it, Kobe!

  • Pingback: SLAM ONLINE | » Kobe Bryant Wants to Play Less Minutes Next Season

  • Evan Boland

    Kobe, we all know you’re playing..

  • Anthony

    Dear Basketball Fans, I know you’ve loved him. He’s really been the closest thing to MJ since I took him (MJ) away. Bet y’all thought I’d let him play forever too. But now its time for me to check this now aging fella too. HE’s HUMAN….He will play this season…but he WON’T be like he was…he won’t win another ring. Be happy w/ 5….AND if he pushes it I’ll have Jerry Buss trade’em in his last year for 1 young borderline phenom, couple of role players, & cash considerations. Sincerely…. at times your friend, and at times not really your friend…..REALITY

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    Great kid? Does Kobe know Dwight’s just 7 years younger than he is?

    As for his idea or perspective on what it takes to win, let’s not act like just because he has 5 rings that his way is the best way. Same dude who disagreed with Phil on how to play during their first run together. Same dude who, last time I checked, thought the best way was to play through himself, not the best 4/5 combo in the league with Gasol/Bynum. He played great last season, but his perspective on winning can easily be criticized.

  • The Seed

    LOL, Howard does act like a kid, go research, their are numerous stories. Also, who is your favorite player in the NBA. Kobe has 5 rings, by his dedication. I remember after Shaq left and everyone stated Kobe will never win again. Guess what he went to back to back to back NBA Finals. Winning two. Kobe way was MJ way, I read stuff like this about MJ, but its a different world in how things are reported. Do you realize MJ teammates hated him and some coaches too. Go research young buck.

  • Sergio

    How much is Dwight paying you to defend him EVERY SINGLE TIME anyone says anything bad about him?

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    How much are you getting paid to not realize that I comment on him on posts that are about him just like I comment on other players on posts that are about them?

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    I don’t need research. I’ve been alive since Dwight’s been in the league. I was alive and aware for Jordan’s time too. So no research needed.

    Let’s end this right now. Kobe works hard. He turned himself into the 2nd greatest SG of all-time after coming into the league and coming off the bench for 2 seasons. But those rings weren’t just about dedication. They were mostly about Shaquille O’Neal. Kobe had great moments in the playoffs, but the Lakers weren’t going anywhere without Shaq. Kobe played one on one a lot because of the attention Shaq had to receive. He didn’t peak as a player until Shaq left and without Gasol, he would have been just like T-Mac…great player, but first round exit in the playoffs. The only thing that separated those two guys when they were the first and second best offensive players in the league was Kobe had Shaq and T-Mac had Michael Doleac and Bo Outlaw. Bryant went to 3 Finals only after Gasol arrived so he didn’t do it by himself like you implied he did.

    Kobe’s way was not MJ’s way mainly because Kobe was not and is not Jordan regardless of how much tape he watched or how much he tried to take from his game or his behavior/attitude on the floor. Phil Jackson said himself that Jordan was better with his teammates than Kobe was. He plainly said that Jordan was a better leader.

  • bike

    Kobe wouldn’t piss down Dwight’s throat if his guts were on fire.

  • The Seed

    Comparing T-Mac to Kobe shows you know nothing about basketball. Go research young buck, T-Mac would not compare himself to Kobe. Also young buck, go see Western Conference Finals, where Kobe used to kill the Spurs. Pop has stated Kobe was the reason Lakers did beat them, when Lakers would win to make it to the NBA Finals, where Shaq never had a quality center from the Eastern Conference to go against. So young bucks see the NBA Finals and are like. Shaq won the Lakers finals not realizing, how do they get there. You don’t know ball, see research is what people do to get things correct, young buck. I don’t want to bring in the playoff numbers and NBA Final numbers for Kobe vs. Shaq to show you. Then you will make another excuse, I don’t need to research I watched it. LOL

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    Just in general…think it’s a great idea for people to learn the difference between defending someone and offering perspective when none has already been offered. Just a suggestion. Quite a few people here don’t know the difference between the two mainly because they can’t stand reading anything about certain players/teams that they don’t agree with. Sometimes, they can’t even articulate why they disagree other than the fact that they like whichever player/team it is. Just because someone doesn’t like what’s being said…doesn’t mean it’s not the truth.

    If someone says Dwight was/is immature, I could ask what did you call it when Kobe refused to shoot in a regular season game years ago and in a playoff game years ago? Trying to prove some kind of point after hearing that he shot too much. He was roughly the same age Dwight is now when he didn’t shoot against the Suns in the playoffs. And there really hasn’t been any act of immaturity as blatant and foul from Howard as those two instances with Bryant. Just a test to see who really understands the difference between perspective and “defending all the time”. Everything’s cool as long as people say things you agree with, but when something gets said about a player/team you like and pull for, now it’s a problem. Inconsistency.

  • loose

    Kinda tough to have Jerry Buss trade him when He’s DEAD.

  • loose

    It’s really always the same argument. Kobe could never win without Shaq or Pau. You’re right, he couldn’t. But it’s the same way the other way around. Just like Jordan wouldn’t have won without Pippen, or Russell without all those HOFers, or Bird without McHale and Parish, or Lebron without Wade and Bosh, etc…

    Bottom line is, Dwight chose not to have the Lakers franchise and Kobe by his side to attempt to win. He chose Harden and the Rockets. And that’s fine. Only time will tell if he made the right choice.

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    Is the phrase “young buck” the extent of your vocabulary or what?

    Kobe said himself recently that T-Mac was probably the hardest player for him to cover. He said he gave him the most problems. Also refers to the debate about who the best player was at that time between Bryant and McGrady:
    http://www.lakersnation.com/lakers-news-kobes-toughest-opponent-was-tracy-mcgrady/2013/08/15/

    How many quality SGs did Kobe have to go against in the Western Conference during those Shaq years? Doug Christie? Derek Anderson? Steve Smith? Those were the guys he went against while Shaq went against David Robinson, Tim Duncan, Chris Webber, and Rasheed Wallace. So yes, obviously Kobe was free to run rampant while Shaq battled those guys in the post. Pop made a decision to pay more attention to Shaq than Kobe because he had to pick one. Kobe went off. But he went off mainly because teams focused more on Shaq. And even with more attention, Shaq still did damage.

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    The only instances where I bring that up is when I read people saying “Kobe did this” and “Kobe did that”. They don’t acknowledge his teammates or the importance of Gasol. I do the same thing when people forget about Scottie Pippen. So yes, it’s always being brought up but only because people are always forgetting to tell the full story.

  • LakeShow

    Very well said.

  • Anthony

    Jerry, Jeanie…one of dem MFs! (lol/smh) u knew what & who I meant….jack@ss

  • Jones

    Nothing better to do than defending COWARD HOWARD!!!!!!

  • 23

    I think LeBron could’ve won without wade. Wade hasn’t been wade in a LONG TIME

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    Nah. LeBron needs Wade. When they are both clicking, teams don’t have anything to throw at them. When the Heat were struggling against the Pacers in the 2012 playoffs, it was those two together that got them over the hump. When they needed a big game against the Spurs after being down 2-1 last season, it was those two getting them that Game 4 in San Antonio. The greatness of the Heat is LeBron and Wade playing well together…teams can’t deal with that. But there’s no shame in James needing Wade at all, even though people try to knock him by saying that he couldn’t do it by himself (as if any of the players they try to compare him to did it by themselves).

  • loose

    Really? Then where are all those banners in Cleveland? Agreed, Wade hasn’t been Wade in a while, but even at 50% or whatever he’s at, Wade is still a damn good 2nd option. Wade at 2006 level would be ridiculous with 28 year old Lebron. Although it may seem like it, Lebron cannot win it all by himself. He needed Wade, and to some extent Bosh as well.

  • Anthony Puhl

    Smelled*

  • Anthony Puhl

    Ishmael just stfu. Throw out any stat u want it doesn’t matter. What matters is the end result. Kobe has 5 rings, Howard has NONE. So OBVIOSULY Kobe knows how to win more than Dwight does. Ur point about Dwight being 28 works against u too. A) Dwight acts like he’s 5 so he needs to grow up and act like he’s 28. B) Dwight is 28 and still hasn’t even smeller a championship. Can u say the same about Kobe? Absolutely not. While Kobe had good teammates, Dwight had a plethora of great shooters to work a perfect inside out game in Orlando. He just didbt get it done. His FT shooting severely hurts his team especially in crunch time and he’s just not a winner. Plain and simple. No defending Dwight he hasn’t earned the right to be defended.

  • LP @ThisisEther

    Another dilusional #8 fan….

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    “While Kobe had good teammates, Dwight had a plethora of great shooters to work a perfect inside out game in Orlando.”…..Shaq was just a good teammate to you? LOL.

    Yeah, you didn’t read a word I said. Or maybe you just lack basic understanding and comprehension skills after you read something. Either way, great job showing the proper way to be a fool. If Dwight came into the league playing with Tracy McGrady in Orlando like Kobe did coming into the league playing with Shaq in LA…then we could have a discussion about what Dwight hasn’t done compared to Kobe by the age of 28. But he didn’t. His best teammates in Orlando were Hedo Turkoglu and Jameer Nelson…compare that to Kobe playing with Shaq. Dwight didn’t have great shooters. Did he play with Ray Allen and none of us knew about it or what? That’s a great shooter. He played with capable, above average shooters. But none were all-time shooters. Rashard Lewis, Hedo Turkoglu, and Jameer Nelson aren’t walking into the Hall of Fame. Shaquille O’Neal is. You probably should have left out anything about teammates because the second you mention it, you leave yourself wide open for humiliation. Because Shaq compared to the guys Dwight played with? Come on.

    I don’t have to defend anyone. Just offer the proper perspective. You didn’t say one thing that I said wrong. Meaning you’re just here to love on Kobe like a few others here. Weak sauce. And the 5 year old comment about Dwight’s behavior? Unless you have a good example of him acting 5, that’s also very weak.

  • Evan Boland

    The Suns coach also tipped his hat to Kobe, basically calling him unstoppable after the ’10 WCF.

  • jytaqetizah

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    Kimmel is so funny. Way to play that off professionally Kobe.

  • Caboose

    That’s a whole new level of delusion.

  • grgeblck

    I would click a few more ups for your reply if I could.

  • Madubbs

    Damnnnnnnnnnn burnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn

  • Madubbs

    Exited for next season thoooooooooooooo

  • Anthony Puhl

    im sorry are u also forgetting about jj Reddick mickael pietrus and courtney lee? thats SIX above average shooters to run an inside out game with dwight. If dwight is as good as he is that is a recipe for winning. And kobe won 2 championships withot HOF shaq. Sooo still without HOF kobe 2, dwight 0? And its a 5 year olds mentality to want to be loved by every NBA playre on the court and be the funny boy rather then be feared like kobe is. Every winner like kobe, jordan and shaw know its importnat to be feared or at least take care of business and not be the “funny man” on the court. Give your head a shake. The guys not a winner. even if he did comeinto the league with mcgrady. The guys not a winner. Having that attitude gets you NOTHING. So six good shooters with a dominant C should give u victory right? guess not. And FYI being a great shooter doesnt make you a HOF. is steve novak a HOF? abslutely not. completley stupid. Comprehend that.

  • Ishmael Jenkins

    Pietrus and Courtney Lee are also not walking into the Hall of Fame. Give it up dude. Kobe won when Gasol arrived. He did nothing without Shaq and before Gasol so don’t act like he did something amazing without great teammates. Dwight never had one single great teammate in Orlando. That’s not an argument you’re going to win with. Kobe’s won with 2 future Hall of Famers in Shaq and Gasol. Dwight didn’t play with 1 future Hall of Famer in Orlando. Vince Carter may be borderline, but he was old when he got to Orlando so he obviously doesn’t count. That’s the difference here that you’re not getting. But go ahead with your “Dwight’s not a winner” kick. You’re offbase with your arguments for it. But go ahead.

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