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Monday, June 15th, 2009 at 10:31 am  |  329 responses

Does Victory ‘Seal’ Kobe’s Legacy?

by Ryne Nelson

Can Kobe win it without Shaquille? The answer today clearly is ‘yes.’

Winning three titles before his 24th birthday put Kobe on the top of the world. But he fell, as everyone eventually does. And the seven years following couldn’t have been more painstakingly long as he clawed through turmoil to get back to the top.

He made it again. With the Lakers belonging completely to him, Kobe quickly learned that being on top is nothing to be taken for granted, especially when playing for one of sports most entitled franchises.

All those years of hearing the question from reporters, fans, relatives (everyone, really) made it seem like, as Kobe described, seven years of extreme pain.

“It was annoying. It was like Chinese water torture, just keep dropping a drop of water on your temple. It was just annoying. I would cringe every time. I was just like, it’s a challenge I’m just going to have to accept because there’s no way I’m going to argue it.”

“You can say it until you’re blue in the face and rationalize it until you’re blue in the face, but it’s not going anywhere until you do something about it. I think we as a team answered the call because they understood the challenge that I had, and we all embraced it.”

With his fourth championship and first Finals MVP, the heavy burden was relived from his shoulders. So can we finally give Kobe the respect he’s deserved for so long? Can Kobe Bryant now, without apprehension or qualifiers, be mentioned in the same breath as basketball’s other all-time greats?

I think the answer today clearly is ‘yes.’

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  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    yes. eboy, stay the f-u-c-BLANK away from this topic, you’re just going to haterize it to death and you know it hahah

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    I think the spot he takes up in the updated SLAM Top 50 is warranted today. Now go fu*k yourself, Justin! I love you!

  • SWIFTboy

    With a healthy Tyronn Lue the Magic would have swept, so this title should have an asterisk next to it.
    In seriousness, even as a Lakers fan, I understand why Kobe rubs alot of people the wrong way. It’s easy not to like him, or question his sincerity. However, if the question is: Does this title end ANY arguement that Kobe should be held AMONG the all-time greats? Then the answer is yes.

  • BostonBaller

    This Finals win and MVP sealed it for some but for us true students of the game we already knew and recognized his greatness whether he was our favorite player or on our favorite team. I’m Celtic Green all day and night but I’m not blind. I’m hoping for a Green and Gold 7 game matchup in next years Finals….

  • BostonBaller

    the mailman just ran I’m heading down and praying my Ish is here……

  • BostonBaller

    I hear the mailman at the door, I pray my new 50 ish is here..

  • BostonBaller

    YES!!!! Gotta go!!!

  • Justin

    What more can the guy do? He can win another championship or type of MVP but really, the guy has pretty much done it all. Every type of MVP, scoring titles, multiple championships, records, all-NBA and defensive teams…

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Kobe will go down as the greatest guard behind Jordan, that sounds fine to me. Kobe won championships seven years apart, which is a great feat, since people thought he was a second bananna on the Lakers before, but average 25 or more a game and closed out plenty of games of the three peat. Kobe has finally got what he deserved- R.E.S.P.E.C.T His game has gotten better and I remember telling everyone that Kobe wanted the Bill Russell award and didn’t go to hard in the regular season. I could see that be he still put up great numbers. Kobe increased his scoring and assists in the playoffs to win the real MVP award. LAKERS 2009 CHAMPS!!!!

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    Eboy… I am shocked. I love you too jerk! (runs around streets) “HES NOT HATING HES NOT HATING….HES ALLOWING ME TO BE A LAKER FAN” hahah

  • http://double-technical.blogspot.com Zee!

    He may be able to get one more. But he’ll only have a few more years to do it.

  • catalan

    Can Kobe win it without Pau? NO.

  • kh

    G.O.A.T jr.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Wasn’t his legacy already sealed? He’s the second best shooting guard in the history of the L. I don’t know about second best guard. Is Kobe really better than Magic?! Maybe, it’s debatable. I’m glad that he finally admitted that the Shaq thing was getting to him lo. We all knew it anyways. Shaq, don’t hold your breath on a Laker comeback!

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Kobe is still not even the BEST LAKER in history, let alone any kind of top 10 player in history at the moment. That can change with a couple of more titles though. Justin, this is why everyone hates yourt squad and the majority of it’s fans. Get 5 rings and then you are on equal footing with Magic, Kobster, for greatest Laker.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    Eboy, he isn’t the best laker, he’s 3rd. behind Magic, Kareem. He’s ahead of West & Baylor. Wilt was barely a Laker, so I’m not counting that spit. He’s like 9th or 10th all time to me overall in league history

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    I’m with you on that.

  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    justin, youre on crack. you obviously dont know squat about jerry west, check what he did, slap yourself, and repent. kobe cant win without pau

  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    im sorry, i meant kwame/javaris

  • http://allanzuss@yahoo.com Mendel

    He needs two more in a row

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    If West played today, we’d call him the biggest choker in history. Just saying. MJ, Magic, Bird, TD, Shaq, Kareem, Wilt, Russell, Big O. Kobe is 10th all time for now.

  • http://www.myspace.com/mcnarrative Kieran

    Think Kobe can legitimately be considered in the top 10 all time now. Whoever thinks he is better than Magic you obviously havent followed basketball for a very long time.

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    Tarzan, I’m not on crack. I legit think hes better than Jerry West. I know his stats, ive seen games, ive talked to people to help get my opinions flushed out. kobe is better than west.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Magic, himself stated that Kobe can be seen as one of the greatest players ever, so some of yall are dumb. Kobe is top 10, I have read many articles about Kobe after this WIN and plenty of ex NBA players, coaches and players today see him as top 10 so some of yall, who probably suck at bball saying he is not are dumbies anyway. Kobe has a chance to win at least two more titles with this group. To me Kobe has passed Tim and Shaq with this win and if he wins one more-ITS OVER!!! LIke Kenny said earlier on NBA TV, Jordan, Magic, Russell, Bird, Oscar, Kareem, Wilt, Tim, don’t agree with Shaq (had nothing to do with Miami Title-Zo played better than him in that series), then Kobe.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Now the real question….CAN KOBE WIN WITHOUT ADAM MORRISON?!?!

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Uhm…..Seed, a little perspective……Kobe has 4 rings and ONE Finals MVP only…..he’s way lacking in THAT category. Stop being blinded by fandom and try to be taken seriously. And Magic is part owner of the team and is critcal and overly praising when it comes to his team, so like your words as a superfan aren’t justified when discussing the Lakers, his are a little misleading too.

  • http://www.myspace.com/mcnarrative Kieran

    Kobe has passed TIm Duncan and Shaq??
    Oh dear

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Shaq had nothing to do with Miami Title?!?! Are you serious Seed? Did you watch Miami that season at all? Even if Zo played better in that series (which he didn’t) what about all the games before that? Shaq is the REASON miami won moron.

  • http://slamonline.com GotHandles?

    didn’t need this win to cement a legacy. he PWNS everyone he plays. dude is beast and his wife is bangin as hell. Legacy was cemented when he pooped on Toronto…prob before that but just sayin.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    That being said, Kobe is a top 10 player…hands down.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    I watched the whole Miami series, Diamper was checking Shaq, Zo changed that series with his defense and Dwade getting refs calls.

  • Mike H

    I honestly believe that Kobe is the best player in the history of the 2008-09 Lakers…

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Also, Ebay, former Nba players and ex coaches and players today put him up there, so shut up, I know more about basketball than a guy who hates on Kobe, you really know bball.

  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    justin, the fact that you had to talk to lots of other people in order to form your opinion speaks volumes.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Ebay, ex players and coaches put Kobe up there.

  • truthteller

    I already thought that he had to win 1 more championship to crack the top 10 all time and he did. So, Kobe Bean Bryant should be included in the top 10 all time NBA players. Anybody who disagrees is clearly hating and that’s some real talk.

  • stryfee

    im just saying… kobe could not have won without sun yue

  • DFigs

    I think he’s probably top 10. But don’t add this Finals MVP into the equation. That award is a travesty – Pau was clearly the MVP.

  • truthteller

    The funny thing is that if Lebron had won a championship this year everybody would have put him in the top 5! Kobe is more accomplished than LeBron is and somehow people find it hard to just give that man his due props. What else does he have to do? Win 5 more in a row? I bet even if he does that you will still find something else to say! Just give it up haters!

  • http://bleacherreport.com/users/42594-Hoops4life- Overtime

    The Mamba…redemption. He’s done all that could be asked and more. Its hard to rank him…its hard to rank any player, they are all so different, but you cannot deny how he powered these Lakers after 7 years of heartache.
    He is among the greats, an All-Timer forever, and the shooting guard of the decade any way you look at it

  • http://www.alllooksame.com Tarzan Cooper

    pau and ariza played better in the finals than kobe, who ran around and chucked 30+ shots as usual.

  • http://www.twahc.blogspot.com twahc

    he’s a great player no doubt about it. it’s his one man show that irritates people. but i am beginning to be persuaded by him that other than himself, who the f*ck can he count on? until that spanish dude came. congrats.

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com DP

    F that Trevor Ariza was the fuggin MVP. But this title does cement Kobe’s legacy as one of the greatest to ever do it in the game and he is a lock for the top ten in my eyes. He will always be in the convo with Jordan, but I don’t think he will ever surpass him as the number 1 guard of all time. Maybe 1a or just 2 but you all know that kobe’s greatness cannot be denied. Props to Mr. Bean Bryant. can’t wait to see what the Kobe Zoom V’s look like. play wit it.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Seed, Shaq averaged 18.4 ppg and 9.2 rpg in the 2005 playoffs, Zo averaged an earth shattering 3.8 ppg and 2.9 rpg…you’re right he played WAYYY better than shaq…

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    why are people bringing bron into this? bron will prolly be top 10 when it’s all said and done but this is about accomplishments, he’s not there yet. nobody is arguing this. kobe has not done more than shaq and td in the league. get real.

  • Mike H

    …haha seriously though Kobe is definitely top 15 all time now. Mamba’s got it all: elite physical talent, unlimited skill (dude can hit half court threes with his LEFT HAND like it’s nothing), and a high basketball IQ. Also, perhaps most importantly, his work ethic is second to none.

  • truthteller

    tarzan,
    Kobe averaged 30,5,8. That’s not too shabby.

  • breeze

    who ever is still hating on kobe its obviously a personal thing he did to you and that was your sister in the colorado…but he is to me my opinion skill set talented all-rounded player the second greatest player in history….behind jordan …magic is great team player but he doesnt have more talent than kobe…maybe more rings but not more talent ….remember my opinion…whoever think otherwise i wouldnt believe you played ball in your life..to do what kobe does is close to impossible..and for all you say that he takes alot of shots like oppose to what other scorcer that doesnt ill give yall 100 shots you still couldnt do what that man does with defense double teams please….

  • mlaw

    mj, the big o, magic, kareem, wilt, russell, TD, olajuwon, shaq, Dr. J, bird, zeke. kobe top 10 is still debatable.

  • http://www.sportweek.fr LexaB

    Can’t we just all say KB24 is one of the greatest, hands down, without trying to define his exact spot??? 9th??? 10th??? 11th??? Who cares, really??? In a team sport like bball you all find passion in having arguments about personnal greatness comparing people that played in the 60′s 70′s or 80′s. Got news for you : all those guys were awesome. And everyone of them, yes even the master Jordan, wouldn’t have won any single title if they had to play alone. For real.

  • truthteller

    How about we say that Kobe is the greatest of this era? (meaning this past last decade)

  • breeze

    i agre lexab …who the hell won a title alone you jerks and speaking on magic he might have had the greatest team in history talent wise

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Every great player needs a great TEAM around them period. There are a ton of phenominal players who have never won because they have never been on a great team.

  • truthteller

    Z,
    So Tim Duncan is more accomplished than Kobe? Really? You see how easy it was for you to agree that Lebron may probably be there when it’s all said and done but you were still hesitant to put Kobe there? Just give it up man! It’s obvious that there is nothing Kobe will do that will ever make you or people like you give him his props and that’s okay. Just have the guts to admit it like Eboy!

  • Bballrehab

    I’m not a Celtics fan by any means, but I still think they’d have repeated if not for all the injuries.
    Shaq to Cleveland!

  • http://hoopmixtape.ning.com/ Simon S.Y Lawy

    SHUT DA F*CK UP, Y’ALL HATER …

  • Khalid Salaam

    Kobe’s in the top 10 all time no doubt. This is not debatable. Stop it.

  • scorp99cam

    Shaq at his prime=definite top 10 all time. I only think Shaq spent 3 years at his prime because he can’t stay in shape though. It has to be included when you throw Shaq in the top 10. Duncan should be above Kobe though, and I am a Lakers fan

  • http://slamonline.com/ Justin Walsh

    Tarzan, no it just speaks to the fact that I’m humble enough to know my opinion isn’t the end all. Chriiiist.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    How is TD NOT more accomplished than Kobe? He’s the greatest PF ever, 4 titles, 3 finals MVP, 2 season MVP, 9 NBA first team selections, 7 Defensive first team selections not to mention he was the centerpiece of all 4 of his titles…He’s above Kobe…

  • Bruno, RJ

    oh no… real basketball-haters are gonna find excuses, flaws, or conspiracy here too.
    they just can’t appreciate the best basketballl player since MJ.
    btw… what was that pass @game 4 and THAT SHOT yesterday?!?!?!?!?
    Kobe was already among the greats, he only climbed a little bit more.
    .
    the only bad thing is that they beat Orlando too easily…
    both OT games were great and Kobe on game 1 was a performance for the ages, but Orlando never gave this Finals much of a chance.
    Congrats Kobe, Pau, Fish, Ariza and Lamar… Phil and all LA fans…

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    (barf)

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    Kobe not being top 10 is only debatable in the new issue of Slam. On newstands now!

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    Seriously though, congrats to the following: Holly, Marcel, Myles, Bodie, Justin, and to a lesser extent B Long and Tariq.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    LMAO at “lesser extent”!!!!

  • Izzo

    [Tyra]
    Kobe, how many girls have said “I love you?”
    Not like ‘I love you Kobe!’ like a fan
    But like, for real, like, baby, marry me
    I love you

    [Kobe]
    You’re sweet
    Once again (Once again)
    Flawless (Flawless)
    C’mon
    Right
    Uh, uh huh
    Yo, yo, it’s like this

    Uh, what I live for? Basketball, beats and broads
    >From Italy to the US, yes, it’s raw
    I’ma search for the one that
    make my wealth feel poor
    Who can ignore the spotlight life of Grandma
    My downfall is how I found the
    aura, so I searched in
    There’s plenty of women with sex
    appeal when it’s filled
    Can even complete the package,
    all I date is actresses
    Can play it safe with them, my money ain’t bait
    But I must take risks to find a honey that’s legit
    Whether she push a buck and a six,
    bumpin’ some mad chips
    Out on her own, or live out of moms and pop’s home
    Watch time, fashion, Adidas attire or Timbo’s
    I don’t know, yo, these women come and go
    Like the wind they blow, how do I
    know it’s you for sure?
    When God talk to me, give me a signal
    But until then, all my ears hear, just let me flow
    C’mon

    1- [Tyra Banks]
    K-O-B-E, I L-O-V-E you
    I believe you are very fine
    If you give me one chance, I promise to love you
    And be with you forever more

    K-O-B-E, I L-O-V-E you
    I believe you are very fine
    If you give me one chance, I promise to love you
    And be with you forever more
    [ Find more Lyrics on http://www.mp3lyrics.org/3AoU ]

    [Kobe]
    Check this out though
    Real love last, now do you love me or my cash?
    My name, fame, drop top, Benz or the wooden dash?
    You know my stash, from Georgie cash
    Platinum, US express, no paper cash
    Spend it all now, or kiss to be rich cash
    Hash, stocks and bonds, laugh when they crash
    Are you the type that brag the jewels you flash
    The type-type with your ex-man and push his Jag
    The type that love no scrubs or pigeons and got mad
    The type that can’t stand a women with her own cash
    You know, like lime, claim she ain’t rat
    The type that get loud in public,
    refrain my hand from a slap
    No time for y’all, too busy for y’all
    Plenty of dimes turn me on and turn
    me off tryin’ to show off
    Get lost, grow up, real women, roll up
    Let yourself go, if you feel this, let me know
    C’mon

    Repeat 1

    [Tyra] [Kobe]
    K-O-B-E, I L-O-V-E you Bounce
    wit’ me, bounce wit’ me
    K-O-B-E, I L-O-V-E you Right, right, uh, uh, uh

    [Kobe]
    Think ya eyein’ me, all along, I’m eyein’ you
    The hunter becomes the hunted,
    girl, I’m preying on you
    Beautiful, the feelings we share are mutual
    Passion that’s telling me so for us is suitable
    Un-controllable desire flows through me
    When you say my name, such lust in your slang
    No time for games, the games I play, all the same
    Can’t get witcha, when the door
    hitcha, when the Lord splitcha
    I figure, hour-glass figures could be dangerous
    Cuz if your time runs out, they
    frame you for your clout
    And having a past, well, I stereotype glass
    All dimes ain’t money, ass, and
    feignin’ for a brother’s cash
    Slash fame, slash power, slash repsect
    All of the above, makes me a
    supreme threat for scrubs
    Love but do you want? One more ‘gain, let me know
    The words flow, from the bottom of your soul
    C’mon

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    Sh we can’t talk about that yet tad.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    “Z Posted: Jun.15 at 10:59 am
    Wasn’t his legacy already sealed? He’s the second best shooting guard in the history of the L.” This comment pretty much sums up my thoughts on this.

  • truthteller

    Kobe’s accomplishments:
    4 NBA Titles
    1 Finals MVP
    1 Regular Season MVP
    11 Time All-Star
    1 Olympic Gold medalist
    2 Time Scoring Champ
    7 All Defensive First Team
    7 All NBA First Team
    3 All Star MVP
    1 Slam Dunk Champ

    Career Stats: 25.1 PPG, 4.6 APG, 5.3 RPG, 1.5 SPG, 0.5 BPG
    Playoff Career Stats: 25.0 PPG, 4.7 APG, 5.1 RPG, 1.4 SPG, 0.7 BPG

    Now where does this rank among the all time great NBA players?

  • DK24

    Kobe sealed his legacy looooong ago. Great player, great skills, and great team player now. You don’t see kids saying look I’ma J you like LeBron or MJ they say I’ma J you like Kobe. Great player great win now get Lamar Odom a starting position and send Bynum to the pine!

  • Izzo

    [Tyra]
    Kobe, how many girls have said “I love you?”
    Not like ‘I love you Kobe!’ like a fan
    But like, for real, like, baby, marry me
    I love you

    [Kobe]
    You’re sweet
    Once again (Once again)
    Flawless (Flawless)
    C’mon
    Right
    Uh, uh huh
    Yo, yo, it’s like this

    Uh, what I live for? Basketball, beats and broads
    >From Italy to the US, yes, it’s raw
    I’ma search for the one that
    make my wealth feel poor
    Who can ignore the spotlight life of Grandma
    My downfall is how I found the
    aura, so I searched in
    There’s plenty of women with sex
    appeal when it’s filled
    Can even complete the package,
    all I date is actresses
    Can play it safe with them, my money ain’t bait
    But I must take risks to find a honey that’s legit
    Whether she push a buck and a six,
    bumpin’ some mad chips
    Out on her own, or live out of moms and pop’s home
    Watch time, fashion, Adidas attire or Timbo’s
    I don’t know, yo, these women come and go
    Like the wind they blow, how do I
    know it’s you for sure?
    When God talk to me, give me a signal
    But until then, all my ears hear, just let me flow
    C’mon”

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    He won’t ever be number one so who cares. It pains me to say it as a knick fan but jordan will always be the goat. No question.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Not above Tim Duncan…lol I pretty much rested that case all ready…

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Tim Duncan is still the ‘best’ winner of the Post-Jordan era. And relalisticly, Kobe/Lebron are both different players. Kobe is closer to what Mike was, but Lebron is a more complete and better overall player than Kobe. Kobe is in his prime now, and made 2 straight finals. Lebron is no where near his prime, and still carried his (less talented) team to 2 straight eastern confrence finals.

  • truthteller

    He won’t ever be number one? Can anybody other than MJ be number 1 in your eyes?

  • http://slamonlin.com tina

    The Lakers need to win more often so that this side of Eboy comes out, it’s nice (he’s nice)

  • Stan

    Kobe is 30 yrs old and already played 12 seasons with 4 rings. He could play 8 more years with the jump shot that he has and could score 35,000 points. If he didn’t have those years with Shaq where the point distribution leaned on the Big Cactus, he might already have 30,000 points right now, and that is mostly against double teams. He has already played more playoff games than Jordan and he’s not even done yet. I hope that he gets a chance to play with Dwight or Yao at some point in his career and win another ring.

  • http://lastknickstanding.blogspot.com Bryan

    No one playing right now truth teller. Not in my book.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    lets just put it like this: when Kobe played with crappy players he averaged 27 points a game. When Mike played with crappy players, he averaged 37 points a game. Kobe is LIKE mike, but he is not mike. He is still the best shooting guard in the NBA today, and arguably the best player, but he will always be 1 step behind Mike for a couple reasons that would take too long to explain to Laker fans. You all from the purple/gold alliance should be happy you won, no need to go overboard and act as though Kobe wasnt 0-2 in his last 2 finals previous to this one.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    Oh Tina……..now you’re going to expose me as the nice guy I really am? Thanks, lady!!!!!!!!

  • truthteller

    That means that Tim Duncan is above Shaq. Am I right Wayno?

  • http://mindyourbusiness@nosybutt.com Allenp

    It’s a damn shame y’all will argue about the same crap over and over again.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    And this is not an insult to Kobe, but let’s be real for a brief second……Kobe has now been in 6 NBA Finals…..he’s won 4 of them and has 1 MVP. Michael was in 6 Finals, won 6 times and won 6 Finals MVP’s…..unless Kobe can somehow pull off 5 more title wins and get an MVP in each of those, there is no comparison, ever. Sorry Kob.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com Eboy

    ^Sorry Allen.

  • truthteller

    BETCATS,
    Magic Johnson is 5-9 in his NBA finals experience and yet he is regarded as the greatest point guard in NBA history. So the whole 0-2 for Kobe means jack! Kobe is actually 4-6 which really isn’t too bad.

  • KOBESBESTFRIEND

    who cares about his legacy?people gonna h8 on my man no matter what.if he aint better than mj than he’s the closest 1!at least we can put the “kobe/lebron” debate 2 rest!its clear mamba is by far the best player on the planet!who makes their teammates better now all u queen james lovers?

  • truthteller

    Eboy,
    We are not comparing. We are asking where is Kobe’s place in NBA history?

  • Izzo

    Co-sign AllenP:People are missing the real story of these playoffs.The Adam Morrison vs JJ Redick rivalry.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    TD > Kobe all-time…for now. I didn’t add his 1 all-star MVP, 11 all-star appearances, 1 olympic gold medal and career numbers of
    21.4 ppg, 2.3 bpg, .8 spg, 3.2 apg, 11.7 rpg, and .685 shooting % regular season.

    Playoffs 23.3 ppg, 2.6 bpg, .7 spg, 3.5 apg, 12.6 rpg, and .607 shooting %. And like I said before, TD was the centerpiece of all 4 of his titles.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    truthteller: It means jack? Jack? Did Magic drive Kareem off those teams, which made them lose? No, the Lakers lost because they were ‘outplayed’, not because of internal bickering, not because of Magic. Magic was always on point, always having good games. Kobe struggled against Boston and Detroit. He did not struggle against Orlando. Mike NEVER struggled against anyone in the finals.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    @ Truthteller – I’d say as far as success in thier Careers TD has a slight advantage over Shaq, yes.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    This is where i would rank Kobe in NBA history as far as ‘being a winner/having the killer instict to close series/having a machine-like ability at doing it’ (we love making lists here!):
    1. Jordan
    2. Bill Russell
    3. Tim Duncan
    4. Kobe Bryant

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    i would take Kobe over Shaq though.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    If I had a choice of drafting Shaq as a rookie or Kobe as a rookie I would pick shaq every time. He brought success everywhere he went during the prime of his career. Now…not so much, but still Shaq > Kobe all-time.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    TD is better than Shaq AND Kobe. Kobe is not as good as Mike and will (likely) never be. The discussion can only start if there’s 3-peat on the way. Mike’s defense often gets overlooked when comparing the two. Kobe is nice on D, Mike would make great guards doubt if they could get theirs on him. Again, Kobe is the 2nd best sg in history. Not too shabby, I’d say. It’s ridiculous that saying that Mike and TD are better than him is considered hate.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Cosign Z

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    TD has another thing going on for him: his teams never sucked. Since he set foot in SA, they have always been a serious contender, year in year out. Not a lot of guys can say that. Ever. Not even MJ.

  • http://slamonline.com Russ Bengtson

    Seal? I must have missed Kobe’s retirement announcement amongst all the hullabaloo.

  • Peter B

    Kobe is the second greatest shooting guard of all time behind Mr Jordan, he is argubaly the second greatest guard of all time, zeke only won twice and Oscar robertson numbers would be very different if the was playing today. However Tim Duncan and shaq have been the most dominant players of the post bulls era, however if kobe can rack up more titles and MVPs he can surpass them both on the all time list.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Another good point Z. Especially looking at TD’s rosters, they weren’t always the most star studded. I can’t remember how many time people said that the Spurs weren’t going to be very good because they only had TD, Tony Parker,, and Manu, yet somehow by the end of the season they’re always in the mix.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Kobe certainly has time to move past TD and Shaq, but it’s a big leap to say that he surpassed them because he won this title.

  • http://slamonline.com Blaze

    props to kobe and the rest of the lakers. even though i think their dirty at times, the had the best team this year. would have been real interesting if kobe had gone to the clippers a few years back when he was wanting a trade. Even though im a posterboy for laker-haters everywhere, I give a lot of credit to Fisher, Gasol, Odom, and Phil Jax.

  • KOBESBESTFRIEND

    TD’s career is on its last leg(literally)!Kobe’s got at least another 3 more rings he is gonna get!unless shaq goes 2 cleveland or kg is 100% no1 is gonna beat LA for a long time!and mj’s defense was only good cuz the refs never called a foul on him!Pip did all the work on d!he couldnt guard reggie miller!and mj only started winning titles when isiah,magic, and bird got old!I would love 2 see mj put up those #s against defenders like artest,battier,or bowen in a zone defense!face it ur little GOAT played against subpar talent!Starks,Ehlo,Smitty,and mark Price!c’pleez!!!kobe is the goat!!!

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    If Kobe wins two more heads will explode.

  • Jackie Moon

    It’s difficult because we’re impatient (it’s part of the human condition), but the “place in history” arguments should really wait until the player has been retired for several years. Think about when you see Slam’s Top 50 of All Time. Do we really argue all that much about the players who have finished their careers? A little. The rankings that cause the most controversy are the active players’ spots relative to the retired ones. When we argue about an active player, we’re left to fill in the blanks about their future accomplishments, and that’s pure speculation, and almost totally subjective. But we all love to speculate!

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    people take td for granted. he was winning games this year with mason, oberto, udoka and hill in the starting 5 at the beginning of the year. his impact his way beyond stats. tim duncan wins basketball games. period.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    Robert Horry is better than everone except Bill Russell.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Again, well said Z.

  • Fat Lever

    What I’m interested to see is how Kobe will rest this offseason, and how that will affect his season next year. Remember, he’s been playing consistently for a year now. If I were him, I’d take some time off to rest, moreso than usual off seasons, and then start up again. But knowing of his work ethic, he’s probably in the gym now.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Darko Milicic is Better than LeBron too Long…lol

  • http://www.realcavsfans.com Anton

    No, but it seals him a manage a trois with a couple of white girls.

  • Peter

    Betcats
    when Kobe played with crappy players he actually averaged 35, scored 81 points in a game and had 4 straight 50 point games…in no way am I arguing he is better than Jordan (greatest ever) but he’s pretty f’ing amazing individually.

    And now has 4 titles which (Seriously) cements him as a winner. The man cannot do anything without being criticized. 30, 5 and 7 shooting 43 percent, but no Ariza and Pau won the series. Get outta here, those guys would have been home a long time ago without KB.

  • http://Egotastic.com Michael

    I agree with Bill Simmons. KObe is now the third best gaurd of all time, and no worst than the 9th best player ever.

    1.Jordan
    2.Wilt
    3.Magic
    4.Kareem
    5.Russel
    6.Bird
    7.Shaq
    8.Kobe
    9.Duncan
    10West

    I don’t get why so many people are putting Oscar so high, Kobe won more rings won a finals MVp. OScar didn’t do that.

  • RedRum

    Kobe is top 10 (higher than Dr J) but not higher than TD or Shaq. Especially TD did it playing hard at BOTH sides of the court, with inferior talent than any other championship team in the last decade. He LED the team in four rings, hitting some incredible shots. If it was not for the 0.4 DFish shot (after his amazing clutch shot over Shaq) and the stupid Many foul on Dirk, TD would have had at least two more rings. And remember, he has beaten every prominent big man in the last 10 years (Shaq, Zo, Ewing, Garnett, Dirk, Sheed)

  • http://Egotastic.com Michael

    I can understand people putting Duncan over Kobe, but not shaq. They both have 4 rings and the Lakers killed the Spurs head to head, it wasn’t even close. The Lakers made the Spurs quit twice. That has to count for something.

  • tavoris

    BETCATS I agree with you on so many levels. I thought Kobe’s legacy as the 2nd best SG was sealed three seasons ago. One might argue that he’s on Magic and Bird’s level RIGHT NOW, and that he doesn’t have to play another game to be considered top 10 all time as well. However, MJ won titles EVERY year of his playing prime (that he actually played). That fact alone makes his legacy untouchable.

  • C2

    It was all about Sun Yue vs Tyronn Lue for me

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    C2 just shut this place down. That is original!

  • jumpman3224

    It always amazed me that Kobe as the second best player on a championship team (3 actually) got little to no credit (even though he was a first team all-nbaer, all-D and had to handle the rock in clutch situations) and it amazed me how somehow his three rings with Shaq weren’t counted the same as Big O’s one (with Kareem), Jerry West’s one (with Elgin & Wilt), etc. I think historically, years after Kobe retires what was said about those titles won’t be remembered. Just his overall greatness will be. But, yes this title should validate him (as well as move him into the discussion for top 7 or so greatest ever)in the eyes of many haters and critics….and Shaq. Not only did he win a title as the alpha dog, he did it with flair and put up numbers only rivaled by MJ and the logo.

  • max

    kobes wack
    LeBron all the way

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ Tariq Al Haydar

    Look, I love Kobe, but come on, you can’t rank him over Tim Duncan at this point. The guy has just accomplished more.

  • Jose

    Congrats, Kobe.

  • http://nba.com Reflex

    Well said Peter, I’m resisting getting involved in this issue as it’s pretty apparent most people still have their hang ups, I find this link serves as useful reminder as to why I definitely shouldn’t get involved http://a5.vox.com/6a00b8ea067a51dece01101629be7d860c-500pi

  • rainman10

    I just couldn’t stop thinkin about Morrison v. Redick.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    Doesn’t Kobe have at least 4 or 5 years before his legacy is sealed? Did I miss the retirement speech?

  • Bruno, RJ

    when will all you people learn not to compare anyone with MICHAEL????
    the man redefined all SPORTS so stop that. Kobe wish he could be like mike, like everyone else does… and of course, nobody will ever get there.
    Kobe is Kobe and he is surely top10 all time, maybe top5 but stop comparing him and MJ… its as impossible as to compare Lebrick and Kobe…
    different LEVEL.

  • D LinkWit

    He still does not have one without Derek Fisher.

  • truthteller

    LeBron is greater than TD!

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Lebrick? When will you see they are 2 different types of players with 2 different approaches to the game?

  • truthteller

    Bruno,
    I agree with you to a certain point. Somebody can be greater than MIKE but you just will never accept it. It may not be anybody playing right now but you can’t tell me that there won’t be some other player who will come around and change the game again! From Elgin to Dr J to Magic/Bird to Mike. All these guys reinvented the wheel in their era so who is to say that somebody else won’t come along and reinvent the wheel again? The question is whether you’ll accept that. I’m guessing maybe not.

  • truthteller

    BETCATS,
    I wanted to see what all the Lebrick fans would say!

  • truthteller

    BETCATS,
    Tell that to the people who keep comparing LeBron and Kobe!

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    truthteller: I am not a Lebron fan. I actually (honestly) like Wade and Carmelo more than these 2.

  • http://shawn-kemps-offspring.blogspot.com/ TADOne

    All of this talk is null and void once the greatness of Ricky Rubio enters the league.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Tad’s sarcasm is something i havent come in contact with in a long time.

  • http://mindyourbusiness@nosybutt.com Allenp

    its hard to rate a guy historically when he is still playing… but when the smoke clears he will be top 5 give the players before some acknowledegment of their greatness…i see the lakers 3 peating….

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    Michael the icon and Michael the basketball player are two things. As of now, he is the greatest icon and the greatest basketball player. Eventually, someone will exceed everything that he has done on the basketball court and will be just flat out better. It’s inevitable. Could be Kobe or LeBron or neither or both! We won’t know these things until all is said and done. Kob still has a good 5 years left at a high level. Bron has about 15 if he wants to. HOWEVER, I sincerely doubt that anyone will have the same impact, the same status that Mike had.

  • http://slam comets

    so why is larry bird so high he only has 3 rings with multiple hall of famers

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    So do I Allenp, as long as L.O. takes and paycut and we reup RZA, so do I.

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    If LO takes a paycut, you reup RZA AND lose Shannon Brown

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Cosign Z @3:27

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    3-peating?! For real?

  • http://slam comets

    they all going to stay put… they got dynasty on their hands… cut luke and sasha off the book they makin 4 million i piece and besides courtsides seat will go… calm down only one leaving is dbenga

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    the Lakers MIGHT win 1 more, but i dont really see it happening, not with this group anyway.

  • http://www.manutd.com Z

    3-peat talks are wayyyyyy premature.

  • http://slam comets

    i see a 3 peat if everyone stay healthy, boston is getting older in the backcourt , cleveland needs a coach, orlando is dangerous if hedo comes back but i dont see beating L.A, houston the closes thing, spurs need an athletic big, nuggets need a post player

  • http://www.hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    Comets: Houston was so depleted when they played LA, yet they still almost won. Next year, they should be healthy and ready to go. I co-blog with 2 Houston fans, so that might be part of the reason i would prefer them to LA.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Kobe finally gets the respect due. FINALLY. I don’t really like the Lakers, but Kobe is a great player. And the talk about winning one without Shaq was mad played out, thought its nice he answered the call. You never hear people ask if Magic could win one without Kareem, or if Bird could win one without the multiple HOFers he had.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Co-sign BETCATS: My Rockets really gave LA their hardest time during the playoffs. With a healthy Yao and a proper back-up center, Ron playing out of his mind, and hopefully a healthy T-Mac and/or a new star, the Rockets look really good next season. Don’t count out My Friend From Argentinaaa and Aaron Brooks.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    I see a major Knicks vs. Lakers rivalry in the near future when LeBron comes to New York.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    Laker fans need to worry about repeating before 3-peating….nobody has any idea what the league will be like in 2010-2011 considering we will be inevitably close to a lock out, and owners will be doing even less then they did this year to improve their teams.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    How do we lose Shannon Brown, BET?

  • http://hibachi20.blogspot.com BETCATS

    He is a free agent too. You cant have 3 out of 3 AND the stingy Laker management coexisting together.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    Won’t have money for him if you sign LO or Ariza, considering you got 15 million going to Fisher, Vujajic, and Farmar combined

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    I have a feeling Sasha is as good as done. But I don’t understand how Laker management is stingy. Are you confusing Jerry Buss with Donald Sterling, BET?

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Oh oh oh! Lists! Lists! Can I join in?!?!
    Air, The Stilt, Magic, Skyhook, Legend, The Dream, Ropes, Big O, the Doctor, and the Big Fundamental… damn… I sort of want to put Kobe in that list but I wouldn’t know who to knock out.

  • rav

    no it doesnt – he needs to win a title without phil jackson

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Also, I think Kobe is, all in all, greater than Shaq. This win proves it. Shaq has never won being the sole option on his team. Kobe just did. So, you know.

  • http://slamonline Have some class

    If they have the money to split the cost of the parade and such, they have the money to keep their players. And if it comes down to it all they have to do is raise the price of each tickets, merchandise etc… a few bucks and they have the money. So you’ll end up getting less popcorn for your buck. Don’t want that to happen, but that’s life. Since they won the championship the fans will be back with more passion for support and pay for it. They’ll reevaluate Sasha I’m sure, but don’t count your chickens before they hatch. Sasha had a bad run, but that doesn’t mean he’s not workable. B. Long, you sound just like my spouse when Odam wasn’t playing very well a few year back and look what happened. Stop predicting trades, your input has no bearing what so ever anyway — enjoy the win and we’ll see what happens next season.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    Juks the league is more flawed then normal with the economy being the way it is….their were no contenders making trades to improve their teams nothing like that at the deadline….its a great championship for Kobe not trying to take anything away from him….but he did win it in a very flawed year. But his legacy as the number 2, off gaurd ever was already cemented before this

  • http://slam comets

    knock out larry bird, he won 3 rings with multiple hall of famers through out his career with boston know one never mentions isiah thomas about being great and he did with less men of accolades…

  • http://slam comets

    nbk a true hater would he league had been flawed if lebron would of won so do we put an asterick around lebron mvp on which sports writer and commentators vote on not the coaches who see the game from the sideline and not the voters who see it from a popularity contest

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    have some class there is a salary cap, i believe you getting the NBA confused with Baseball

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    NO i would have said that no matter what….and the title is not flawed the lakers earned it.. i was saying to flawed teams were in the finals. I would have said the same thing about cleveland

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    two*

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    point being comets, that Kobe being the sole option on his team and winning the title this year does not make him better then shaq. IMO

  • http://slamonline.com Austin

    You can’t say whether kobe is the best or not at this point, his career isn’t over yet. I think once it is all said and done he will be in the top 5 for sure.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Kobe was NOT the sole option on that team. He had Odom, Pau, and Ariza, Pau being the most notable. I hardly call Kobe the “sole option” on that team.

  • http://slamonline Have some class

    Kobe is Kobe and MJ is MJ, you compare them as if they are playing on the same level. If it were possible, I’d like to see MJ play in todays bball games and Kobe play back then, then MAYBE you could have something to compare to. The players of today are much stronger then back then and there’s more competition to be on the NBA, thus better players. Also the rules of today are different, etc…. Either way ” Not the same level” Besides, I don’t like MJ’s commercials, they make him look as if he think he too good to be around anyone — He comes of as being very arrogant.

  • http://slam comets

    I think the problem with imposters is some slam problem because this is Allenp and I’m randomnly posting as some dude named “comets” because his info popped up in my screen.
    And that wasn’t me commenting earlier.

  • http://slam comets

    Comets real name is Zarko Brankovic.
    Hello Zarko.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    THat happened to me with your name a couple weeks ago allen wtf

  • lAKERSSHOWTIME87

    Greatest player ever is Jordan, second Greatest players ever is Magic. Third is Kareem. From 4th to 10th is debatable. If Kobe can win 3 more championships and have a total of 7 rings then i think he will pass Magic and may even be better then Jordan. But for now Kobe is top ten.

  • http://slamonline Have some class

    Nbk, there’s way around everything including other less involved players to trade and players who are willing to drop their contract for a new one just to keep their teams together. Odam himself said he would take a drop to stay with the Lakers. If these players are smart they are investing in other things, not just sponsorship, then just their bball talents.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    Bill Russel Lakers fan……bill russel

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    whatever world your living in have some class you need to realize that these are people’s careers…..they want to earn as much as possible while they are playing.. you can have good faith or whatever that odom will sign for pennies on the dollar..or you can be realistic and realize the lakers have to pay Ariza atleast twice the amount they are paying him now….and they are already over the luxury tax.

  • http://slam comets

    i dont believe that kobe is better than shaq, i think its hard to compare big men and guards they have different responsbilities to a team.. but people that play the same position thats fare game.. Bill russell the greatest center jabbar and wilt a very close second, tim ducan the best power foward period.. small foward larry bird or dr. j thats up for grabs all depends on who u asking that an demographic answer. shooting guard jordan period. point guard magic close second isiah …
    top ten
    1.jordan
    2.russell
    3.jabbar
    4.magic
    5.wilt
    6.ducan
    7.isiah
    8.larry
    9.dr.j
    10.shaq, kobe could be rank higher but they are not even the best players at their position shaq will never catch russell so him and tim ducan are fighting for top five spots
    when its over.. if kobe get one more ring he will pass magic as the second best guard in nba history

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    And nobody is trading for the Lakers over payed crap talent (sasha). They are going to either sign and trade…..or just let one of the two walk.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    nbk has been reading Bill Simmons too much.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    Im good with that list – except isiah

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    I barely ever read bill simmons B.

  • http://slamonline.com B. Long

    Have Some Class:First of all his name is Odom, O-D-O-M. Second of all, your starting to annoy the sh!t out of me and you’ve been on Slamonline all of 5 minutes. That’s pretty impressive.

  • http://slam comets

    allenp i never wrote an comment under ur name and im not an imposter

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    @B – What do you think the lakers are gonna do about this FA situation? To me they need to sign Ariza and Brown.

  • JoeMaMa

    Listen. Idiots. Wilt is the best ever. I don’t care what anyone says. He’s not the greatest winner; that’s Russell. He wasn’t the league’s claim to billions; that’s Jordan. But he averaged 50, FIFTY a GAME for a whole season. He averaged 37 and 23 in his ROOKIE YEAR. They had to double the lane size because of him.
    BEST EVER. It’s like a 9 foot skilled player coming in right now and the league having to change the way the game is played because him. Could you imagine that??!!?!

  • http://slam comets

    Comets, I wasn’t saying you were an imposter. I’m saying that right now, I’m posting as you because of some glitch in Slam’s website that allows other people’s info to come up in your screen.
    This is Allenp and I approve this message.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Many people have been having the same problem for the past week or so Allen. It happened to me for like 2 days last week.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    a 9 foot skilled player……a 9 foot human being would be the 1st ever. so i don’t get your analogy at all. Maybe the rules back when Wilt cam into the league made it easier for big athletic players, hence him having rediculous numbers……there is no way wilt was that much more physically imposing then dwight howard. You just have to take into account the times. But I guess us “idiots” think to much into that sort of thing.

  • http://nba.com tealish

    Jukai: Kobe was the Laker’s SOLE option? Really? Pau Gasol, anyone? Dude was beasting throughout the entire year and the playoffs. I do agree (if this is what you’re getting at) that Shaq is ranked too high at 4th on the SLAM’S new top 50.

  • JoeMaMa

    it was my way of saying he was so big, tall, and athletic that the only way we can fathom having a player like him these days is to witness some complete freak come in and rip everyone. Mkay?
    And maybe the rules were easy for Wilt? they actually had to change the rules to level the field for him. Doesn’t that tip you off to something?
    You can only compare a player to the others in his generation. And Wilt dominated like no other. People are just so insistent that Jordan’s the GOAT because they came up when he dominated. But if we were taken back to Wilt’s 100 point game, things would be completely different.

  • Derek Fisher

    You guys think it was Shaq and Kobe leading the Lakers to the 3peat and now this? Naw homie it was all me and that bitch Kobe stole my Finals MVP award. You see the shots I hit to win Game 4. KObe ain’t hit one of those since 06.

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

    @ comets – I liked your list, although I would have to put Shaq and Kobe above Isaiah Thomas.

  • Derek Fisher

    You guys think it was Shaq and Kobe who got the 3peat and now this title. Naw homies, it was all me. And that bich Kobe stole my Finals MVP. U see the shot I hit in game 4. RIDICULOUS. Kobe hasn’t hit one of those since 06.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    If your going to peg anyone as the best ever you are automatically comparing him to players in other generations. Your obviously the idiot

  • http://www.twitter.com/Th3_R3al_Chris Young Chris MP3

    The only thing wrong with the Slam top 50 list is that there was that misprint that mixed Wilt, Russell, and Shaq’s names up. Bill Russell is the 2nd greatest of all time (and putting Wilt ahead of him is a travesty seeing that Wilt won two and Russell won 11). Shaq is the 2nd best Center of all time. Diesel won more than Wilt and was more dominant than Russell.

  • JoeMaMa

    Wilt – more dominant than anyone else. So I took the best of each generation, compared numbers, and guess what? Wilt’s the most dominant. Best winner – Russell. Most dominant/best – Wilt. Can you really not see that???
    And it’s ‘you’re’. Not your. I’m the idiot?

  • JoeMaMa

    Young Chris – Winning is a team thing. If you’re paired with bad players, you can’t control that. Rating individual players is based on skill, numbers, and to a fairly large extent, winning.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    You can’t compare numbers without comparing the players in those generations and the rules they played under. you are an idiot

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    and don’t give me grammer lessons on a message board duesch bag. If you correcting my writing has any barring on life in general go ahead but for now stick to your crappy comparisons and idiot assumptions.

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    idiotic* don’t want you getting to excited.

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

    You know your old when 16 year old kids talk about MJ’s playing days as “back then”…. and then go on to say well, if MJ was playing today, or if Kobe was playing back then….
    You young kids realise that MJ and Kobe played against each other for 3-4 years right…? and from 2001-2003 MJ averaged 21 ppg 5.8 rpg 4.5 apg right? right? Sure MJ was in the eve of his career and Kobe was dominating – but they played against each other and rose to the occassion…you might want to get hold of the allstar game highlights from those years perhaps….

  • http://slam comets

    @dacre shaq and kobe’s future as best players ever are still progressing i did not rate them because they are not best at their position and they are still playing i rated tim ducan cause he is the best poward foward so he can go foward or stay the same.shaq, kobe and ducan are link with eachother they are fighting for legacy in the top five however tim is the best at his position…

    @joemama wilt was dominaint but he lost a lot he did not even win college national championship and for all his dominance he only won twice and he should of won more… the ball does not always bounce the way u want to..

  • http://slam comets

    and i believe people tend to forget yesterday…. Jabbar might be the best player ever 6 championship, 6 mvps, 3 national chips over 30,000 career points…. top five rebounders of all time…. jordan has six rings but he is consider to be better than abdul what would have been big O leagcy without abdul, what about magic abdul was injured in one game and magic took over, but he played jordan without abdul for season he got spank.abdul is never considered number 1 i wonder why…

  • Mike

    Where is James Worthy in the top 50. You got to get a blog about the top 50!! Kobe is the second best 2 guard ever!! Period. But to even notion that he’s better than MJ is crazy. You youngins ever saw come fly with me? I love Kobe but damn Mike $hit was so crazy man just You tube it.

  • JoeMaMa

    hahaha nbk you spelt douche bag wrong. make a joke about it ahahaha

  • http://slam comets

    people tend to take flash over substance thats why everyone believed lebron was better than kobe…. substance prevailed last night just like last year in the finals… Kobe has been through all of the trials and tribulations and as a fan of basketball its gets greater later if ur a laker fan.. the jordan fans dont wont to let go just like the magic johnson fans did not want to let go but its an new era and it started last night…as they say in star wars” the saga continues”

  • http://fjdkslf.com Jukai

    Comets: you’re a bit hypocritical if you believe Russell is the best center ever, who had at LEAST three (and sometimes six) hall of famers for all his thirteen rings, and yet discredit Bird for playing with his hall of famers. Let me tell you something, McHale was the only REAL deal for the Celts… Archibald was old, Walton was damn near cripple, and Parish is the most overrated player of ALL-TIME (dude was a Marion-level glorified garbage player. He was tall, had huge hops, but that’s where his range and worth ended. Wasn’t even that great of a one-on-one defender, although he was an excellent weakside blocker, but that’s cause dude was tall).
    If you think Kobe is better than Larry Legend, you’re just out of your mind. I mean, 24-10-6. That was his CAREER stats. That’s other worldy. Man.
    I love Isiah, but he’s not even in my top 15.

  • Joe A

    The problem with Kobe’s legacy is that both his supporters and detractors both have valid reasons that support their claims. His fans will say he is the most gifted offensive players ever, the haters will counter with he takes too many ill advised shots. Fans will point to this championship to show he can lead a team, those against him will point out the fact that the Lakers had one of the easiest roads to the finals in history;(they played a team that limped in to the playoffs, a team that lost their best player 3 games into the series, and the magic, who seemed shocked that they made it that far)and the numerous times Kobe has quit on his team. I’m a Kobe hater, but I will say he belongs in the top 30 of all time. As a side note, please SLAM, don’t put Kobe on the cover again next issue, put a team photo,put Blake Griffin, or even put Phil Jackson on the cover. I really don’t want to open my mail box next month and see Kobe for the 4th time this year.

  • http://Nicekicks.com Hollywud15

    @Have some class: soo u dont like mj bcuz his comercials made him look cocky, yet, Your a kobe fan….? ohhh the irony

  • chintao

    F.Y.I., Chinese water torture does not involve dripping annoyance. It consists of force-feeding the victim great volumes of water, then hanging him upside-down and beating on his stomach, causing damage to internal organs. I wish someone would give Kobe a taste of the rillness.

  • http://www.lkz.ch Darksaber

    chintao with the knowledge. Righteous!

  • Orlando Green

    Anyone that says that anyone on that Laker team played better than Kobe in the finals doesn’t know a thing about the game. Everything players like Pau, Trevor or Lamar get is due to Kobe. So Kobe is amazing enough to get his 30 and he is linked to at least half to points that everyone else gets.

    Kobe is top 10 all-time no doubt. Second best shooting guard of all-time. He is more skilled than Magic, it’s not even close. However, because Magic has accomplished more he should be placed before. But if we were picking teams, I would pick Kobe before Magic 10 times out of 10.

    MJ, Wilt, Bird, Russell, Oscar, Magic, Kareem, Kobe, O’neal, West.

    I still haven’t bought my SLAM top 50, so I don’t know what you guys came up with. I don’t like putting Wilt so high, I think he would be just a normal good pivot in today’s league. But I don’t know who else to place at the number 2 spot. It’s Kobe’s for the taking. :)

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    ARE YOU KIDDING? Wilt Chamberlain is too high? He’s greatest center of all time!
    Peep this:
    One of my favorite centers, Willis Reed, once said that he was really proud of his first game against Wilt. He scored 36 points against him, while only holding Wilt to 56 points. Do you hear/read that?? “Only holding Wilt to 56 points”. Back then holding Chamberlain to 56 points was an ACCOMPLISHMENT.
    He’d just be a normal good pivot? Don’t joke around like that.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Oh yeah, and Magic was way less skilled than Kobe? Are you kidding me AGAIN? They played different positions, but if you really think he wasn’t that skilled, I suggest you at least go youtube his highlights.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Young Chris, read what I wrote. Wilt Chamberlain is the greatest center of all time. Its BARELY debatable.

  • http://slamonline.com Blaze

    blazers in 2011. new ish of slam is dope. congrats to kobe for winning his LAST ring of his career. If Shaq signs with the cavs, they will again lose in ecf, spurs arent getting any younger (or better), Chris Dudley is my homeboy.

  • Pardeep

    What did I tell everyone! Kobe proving why he is the best in the world baby! Lakers back on top and we jus getting started. By teh way Kobe offically top 6 players ever.

  • http://slamonline.com Blaze

    when will slam do a piece on dereck coleman, or kevin duckworth whom has been gone almost a year now. It was always hard to dislike 00duck.

  • http://slamonline.com Nw09

    He really didn’t need this title to seal his legacy he was already in the “One of the greatest to ever play the game” talks. It was just a sweeter achievement because of the scrutiny he faced involving the departure of the 04 team, and not being able to win it without Shaq and he did. So that monkey is off of his back if he can add a little more hardware to his reseme and then go out with a bang then his legacy will completely be sealed imo.

    But I will say this it takes alot of out of you to been have played for so long, with the wear and tear on your body included with being 31 and still performing at a high level. That’s difficult to do. But hopefully he comes back next season rested and rejuvenated because he still has more work to do.

    congrats to “Bean” on number 4 though he deserved it because of the climb back to the top took a hard effort.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/fear/ Freedom Fries

    Kobe’s so good, he was GOAT before he ever played. It will be interesting to see what happens in the off season and what the lakers look like next year – I’m willing to bet a dozen croissants aux amandes that they do not repeat.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/fear/ Freedom Fries

    just read that simmons article – mos def worth the read

  • Eric

    I love how the myth of Kobe is unfolding. “kobe has won four championships” Yeah, but here’s the thing. Three of those championships came when he was playing side kick. Kobe has more in common with Dwayne Wade than he does with Magic,Bird Jordan or even Duncan all of whom LED their teams to muliple championships Magic/Bird/Jordan/Duncan were never side kicks.

  • http://www.supremenewyork.com Waylonakolipse

    I think a lot of people hate on Kobe because of the retarded Laker fans. They’re almost as annoying as Raider fans. And his two lame nicknames “Black Mamba” and “The Ultimate Closer” are very irritating to hear if you’re not a Kobe-Fag. Kobe is the best player in the NBA from 2000-2009, but barely over Tim Duncan. His reign as the best player will end soon and I see Lebron clearly taking the mantle in the 2010 season. I say this not because I don’t like Kobe but because he’s losing athletic ability. And all this Kobe in the top 5 or 6 talk is garbage because he has never beat a team, in the playoffs, that was comparable to the winning teams of the 60s, 70s, 80s, or 90s. And when he did he got powned hard, see Detroit ’04 and Boston ’08. Now if he wins next year over a healthy Celtics team my argument would be defeated.

  • Peter

    Eric, why is kobe a side kick and magic isn’t, he played with kareem.

  • Peter

    We are so obsessed with individualism that some of us can’t seem to fathom the idea that one person can’t win a championship by themselves, it’s ALWAYS a team effort. Unless a player accumulates all the statistics his team generates, he is only partially responsible for the championship.Being the captian of the team doesn’t make your championship any more deserved, you need to assess a player’s individual contribution, Kobe did more than his fair share to win his first three chips, so please can explain to me why he shouldn’t be acknowledged for them.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Eric, read articles from other websites beside your idiotic thinking about basketball. Larry Bird played with Hall of Famers and only won three titles, do we say that about him. Scottie played with Jordan, is he a sidekick. Drexler won with Hakeem, is he a sidekick. Shaq can not do it alone , if he could he would have more than one MVP award and way more than 4 Chips. With Orlando he lost, with Miami he got one, with Suns he will lose and with Lebron if he goes, he will hurt Lebron more than help, by him clogging up the middle with no more skill to move out of the way. Dwade is good, compare him with Lebron=Kobe has left them for now with his 4th Chip. Even the Hater, Skip Bayless puts Kobe at number 7 on his all time list, and he really hates, Eric you are stupid.

  • jumpman3224

    Magic Johnson said after the game that he thinks Kobe will get the next Staples Center statue. I was wondering do you guys think LA will retire 8 (3 cookies – 81 points, etc.) or 24 (MVP, 1 cookie, 1 Bill Russel and counting). I think both, but I’d be interested in hearing someother takes.

  • Orlando Green

    Teddy…Wilt didn’t play against the same competition as players are used to today. I’m still saying he’s a legend for what he did in his time. But I still think Shaq would rip his head off.

    I don’t need to watch highlights of Magic, I used to watch him live. There is nothing that Magic did that Kobe would be unable to do. However, you can’t say the same going the other way. Case closed.

  • http://www.slamonline.com/online/category/blogs/fear/ Freedom Fries

    O green – you’re right, unless that list includes consistently passing to wide open teammates, being gracious, not antagonise all his teammates, have a baby sky-hook, care about anyone other than himself, and practice looking like an angry werewolf, other than that you’re spot on.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Eric is stupid but you’re pretty stupid yourself if you think McHale and Parish together are half as good as Shaq. Don’t knock Bird’s accomplishments.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Orlando Green: First off, you’re right. Outside of passing, rebounding, help defending, blocking shots, disrupting the passing lanes, and not punishing his teammates and destroying their self esteem when they screw up, there is nothing Magic can do that Kobe can’t do better. Very good.
    Secondly, here are some cool Wilt Chamberlain stats:
    Wilt Chamberlain once played over 48 minutes a game. For a season.
    Wilt Chamberlain once averaged 8 assists a game. In the same year, he once had a triple double with 20 points, 20 assists, and 20 rebounds. A reporter also noted he had twelve blocks, but it was not officially counted back then.
    Wilt Chamberlain once broke Johnny Kerr’s toe by throwing down a monsterous slam dunk which such force, when it went through the basket and onto Kerr’s foot, it shattered the damn thing.
    Wilt Chamberlain once a player’s shot in mid air (forget the players name, will search it later) and the sudden stop of the ball caused the player, whow as going forward, to jerk the opposite way so fast that he threw his back.
    Wilt Chamberlain could dunk on a twelve foot rim easily, which he did during pregame shows at Kansas University.
    Wilt Chamberlain averaged over 20 rebounds a game well into his thirties, which was during the 1970s, where the league was plenty physical.
    Wilt Chamberlain could dunk from the free-throw line. At 7’1.
    Wilt Chamberlain was running marathons when he was 50.
    So, tell me. Why would the physicalness of today’s league mean anything to how dominant Chamberlain would be?

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    *with such force
    *Wilt Chamberlain once blocked a players shot

  • JoeMaMa

    Anyone who averages 50 a game is the MAN. And Wilt played against Russell, and in their head to head matchups, Wilt averaged 29 and 29. He also led the league in assists one year.
    Yes, if George Mikan played Shaq, Shaq would destroy him. And if George Gervin played now, he’d get muscled out of the game. Each generation adds something new, as they build upon the last one. Rule changes, weights, the commercialization of the game….
    But NOBODY could do it like Wilt.
    Wilt – recorded 550lb bnech press, 48-50 vertical, as he was the college high jump champion.

  • jelloman

    Soft..if the Celtics were healthy, this would have been their year again. Kobe still can’t beat the Celts!

  • Peter

    Its funny everyone who defends old players like wilt strictly based on stats…has anyone ever seen them actually play?

    All I know is I saw some clips of earl monroe playing the other day and the man could barely jump over a book.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Peter: Yes, I’ve seen a lot of game that Wilt played. As has most people who are commenting.

  • Peter

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6ucfpGWfhDU

    I don’t think the words “help defense” existed in 1969 (or goaltending for that matter), look how much space there is in the lane!

  • http://slam comets

    I hate when people think Shaq would have killed Wilt. I really do.

  • Mike H

    @Jukai’s 11:23 am comment: Dude that’s some crazy sh*t abbout him breaking Red Kerr’s toe. I’d never heard that story before. I have a whole new appreciation for the Stilt

  • Peter
  • http://slam Allenp

    Man, y’all should read Wilt’s bio on NBA.com. Wilt was better than Shaq. There is no comparison.
    Talking about Wilt wasn’t playing against anybody… Who did Shaq dominate against?
    Bill Russell was nobody? Willis Reed? Al Attles? Nate Thurmond?
    Are these cats any worse than the cats Shaq dominated during his career. Check your history losers.

  • Peter

    Its not about one on one domination…look at what just happened to D Howard…he probably could have gone one on one against pau all night even with no moves but the help D these days is so much more sophisticated they can crowd these guys. Back then that stuff didn’t exist. No tape of the big dip to review. Just man up against a guy a foot taller than you.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Peter
    You think teams were just “manning up” against Wilt?
    That’s crazy talk. Read the bio and see what teams were doing. Wilt basically faced the Hack a Shaq well before Shaq, and well before all the current rules to protect players.

  • Stan

    How did this thread become Wilt vs. Shaq? It’s the legacy of Kobe we’re talking about people! I think Wilt is better than Shaq head to head.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    From Wiki:
    In Chamberlain’s junior year, the 1957–58 NCAA season, the Jayhawks’ matches were frustrating for him. Knowing how dominant Chamberlain was, the opponents resorted to freeze-ball tactics and routinely used three or more players to guard him.[27] Team mate Bob Billings commented: “It was not fun basketball… we were just out chasing people throwing the basketball back and forth.”[27] In addition, Chamberlain grew weary of the punishment inflicted on him; after a game against Missouri, he showed imprints of two rows of teeth in his arm
    So, yeah, that was college basketball. If you don’t think Chamberlain was being triple teamed, you really know NOTHING about basketball before you were born. Chamberlain, in an interview (I believe in the 80s) once boasted that he could easily have averaged 70-points in today’s league, because the league was too talented for him to be triple and quadrouble teamed, and he would have been able to go one-on-one much more often. That is obviously a vast overexaggeration, but you get the point he’s trying to make.

  • CaptainObvious

    Anyone who doesn’t give Kobe credit for the 1st three titles is a bleepen moron.

    Kobe was putting up great numbers for those teams and he was those teams 1st option in the 4th quarter when games and championships are won. That is not a sidekick.

    Kobe is one of the greatest winners in the history of the league and all the haters are mad. I love it.

  • Peter

    Jukai watch the video I posted earlier. As for 70 points? Wilt also claimed to have slept with 20,000 women which would be an average of almost 3 a night for 20 years straight. So…

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Peter: Wow, a five minute highlight video! It’s amazing how a HIGHLIGHT video in an age where there wasn’t much footage would have Chamberlain doing fantastic plays one on one instead of forcing up shots three on one or four on one! I’m totally dumbfounded! Flabbergasted! Stupefied!
    I guess if we go by the videos you sent me, Shaq never got double teamed either and mostly scored on alley-oops.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Also, Wilt claimed he could lift 600 pounds in his arms, and said during his college days he had a 48-50 inch vertical. Wilt said a lot of dumb things. That doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a point about teams not be able to double team him as much in this era.

  • Peter

    look wilt was obviously an amazing specimen but you can’t argue that players from back then could compete today. they were smoking in the locker room at half time for christs sake. its like saying pele would be able to play in today’s premier league. people/athletes evolve. and basketball for all the skill it involves is still a game where athleticism plays a huge part. Was Wilt more dominant comparitively in his day than Shaq was in his? No question, but to say he would match up with Shaq in his prime is a stretch.

  • Peter

    And by the way I’ve never been a fan of either of them.

  • Peter

    Oh and the point about the highlight video was that his plays weren’t so fantastic.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Peter: Are you serious? Earl Monroe didn’t need to jump over people, he played with the proper skills to maneuver AROUND people. And please, explain to me your idiotic reasoning that the statistics of Wilt Chamberlain somehow mean that he wouldn’t be a good player in today’s league, because averaging 50 points and over 20 rebounds in a single season seems pretty f*ckin good.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    Also, saying he COULDN’T match up with Shaq is a stretch.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    @ Joe: I don’t care how skinny Iceman was, he’d still dominate in today’s game. How can you honestly say that he’d be muscled out when the number of cheap touch fouls called is at an all time high? Don’t say cr@p like that. The greatest players of each era would still play at a high level despite evolution of the game.

  • Teddy-the-Bear

    I like how people say the game has evolved into a more physical style of play. IT HASN’T. Yes, the 90′s were a time of hardnosed, physical play, but after that the NBA has actually evolved into a softer game, as noted by the prevalence of touch fouls and flagrants called.

  • QaSaNoVa

    SHAQ: Sheeeeesh man!! Kobe’s ass tastes like a used rubber!! MJ’s used rubber!!!

  • thegman8

    Since the dawn of time, man has asked the question of what makes kobe bryant, aka the black mamba, so unstoppable.

    I’m not a kobe fan, but he is obviously the best player in the nba today. If you can have any one player next season – for just a year, without thinking of the future, without looking at potential, etc – will you pick kobe or lebron? I rest my case.

  • JoeMaMa

    I know the Iceman could still do it, but I’m of the opinion that each generation builds upon the previous one. Gervin would still be a special player, but he wouldn’t be the same as in his own time. Dominate? That’s a big word, and I don’t think he could. Maybe with some serious weight lifting. Dude was skiiiiinny.

  • RedRum

    One point… all this talk about “doing it without Shaq” doesn’t validate the point of how important Shaq was?

  • RedRum

    One minute… doesn’t all this talk about “doing it without Shaq” validate the point how important Shaq was?

  • Hubert

    now time to prove he can win it without dfish.

  • Eric

    Peter, Kobe was a side kick because everything ran thru Shaq. kobe was the second option. That’s why he didn’t win any finals MVP’s. And no Magic wasn’t a side kick. Everything ran thru him.

    Seed, yes Pippen was a side kick. During the Bulls championship runs he, like kobe was the second option. The Same with Drexler. That’s all yopu white trash moron.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Eric you are what Kobe calls idiotic thinking, you are a dummy. Do you watch basketball or do you just comment to see your name on the screen. Pippen had more to do with Jordan success than anything, Pippen guarded the toughest players and did all the little things. But of course Jordan got all the credit. Kobe is a sidekick, but took over games when Shaq wasn’t on the floor during 4th quarters when he couldn’t hit free throws. Do you call others like Magic, Larry and others sidekicks, they played with multiple Hall of Famers, but its OK for them. Kobe was just as good as Shaq, the triangle offense is about getting the ball inside and plus if you don’t give credit to Pippen, Drexler or Kobe, you need to watch some youtube games of these players.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    The Seed: it’s cool how you can keep ignoring me, but I’m going to keep on comenting that Kevin McHale and Robert Parish COMBINED are half the player that Shaq is. Really. The Boston Celtics success had so much to do with Larry Bird, it’s not even funny. Somewhere along the line, Larry Bird became a legendary three-point shooter. That could not have been farther from the truth. Larry had awesome post moves, was great on the break, had LEBRON-ESQUE court vision (if he had the mobility, he could easily have played the point way more often)… Larry outrebounded Parish and McHale on many, many occasions. Dude made smart drives, and was probably the best forward in the way he moved without the ball: spread the floor from the three when the D was closed in, cut or posted when the D was spread out. He was NOT a three-point shooter. Really, he wasn’t at all.
    I’m not disagreeing with you about Kobe. I personally think Kobe, over his career, has been better than Shaq, simply because Shaq never worked on his game while Kobe worked hard enough to surpass his old partner. But really, stop using Bird to make your points. Bird WAS the Celtics.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    And Peter, I still don’t get your logic. Wilt averaged 50 and 20 while being triple teamed on every possession in a game where you could pretty much choke hold someone to foul them. How would that not translate to something like 35-15 in a day where, albeit much more physical, touch fouls mean easier scoring in the post and triple teaming Wilt, with Wilt’s amazing passing, would be utterly worthless?

  • Cobro

    Hi ALL – Keep in mind there is a different between BEST player, and GREATEST player. BEST is just that, a player that is unbelievably skilled and has individual success. GREATEST has to do with one thing: winning! This iw why, when start to talk about ALL-TIME players, you should actually do a combination of the two when factoring in your decisions. If you factor in GREATNESS (winning) – then you would indeed have Kobe over Jerry West as the second best 2 guard. And you would have Bill Russell over Wilt, even though Wilt was probably a better all around center. You’d put Isaiah ahead of John Stockton, Duncan WAY ahead of Mailman, etc, etc. In some very nice, rare cases like Jordan, Magic & Bird you have a player that has elements of both: BEST and GREATNESS. KOBE is one of those players, and he will get all the props he deserves, and, especially if you take the top 10 by position (2 players at each position), then YES – Kobe is Top 10 ALL-TIME….it cant be argued. He’s clearly the second best 2 guard ALL-TIME, ahead of Jerry West….even Jerry said as much himself very recently. Keep in mind this one thing: He’s only 30, and we’ve still got more to come…

  • Peter

    Jukai that’s exactly it…it can’t just translate. Think about it. You couldn’t find a player in the NBA today that couldn’t do a behind the back dribble agree? Bob Cousy couldn’t even dribble with his left hand and he was the best point guard of his time. Things that are a basic part of a players development now were extraordinary skills back then. If Wilt, with his natural size and athleticism grew up in this era I’m sure he would be extremely dominant, but you can’t just take the Wilt with his moves and game from the 60′s and transplant him into the modern game. Did you see the defense being played back then? He was a man amongst boys. Sh’t even Bill Russel was only 6’10, thats like Lamar Odom guarding Shaq.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Jukai, sorry for ignoring you. I was using Bird as an example he played with great players, A lot of people see Mchale and one of the greatest forwards ever and Robert Parish as a great center and Dennis Johnson as one of the great point guards and Anige as of one the great shooters from 3. Since you said Mchale and Parish are not close to Shaq. I will go with Stats with you from the 84 to 87 Finals and you will see Bird had help, even getting outscore in the Finals by his sorry players-you say.
    84 Finals Bird 27, Johnson 17, Parish 15, Machale 13
    85 Finals Mchale 26, Bird 23, Parish 17, Johson 16
    86 Finals Mchale 25, Bird 24, Johson 17, Ainge 15
    87 Finals Bird 24, Mchale 20, Parish 16, Johnson 21
    Jukai, he had alot of help, so thats why I am using Larry Bird, he is one of the greatest, but his sidekicks played better sometimes in the FINALS!!!!

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Peter: I’ve seen entire games. A lot of the time, it was a pass back-and-forth between Chamberlain and someone else because everyone in the area would immediately crowd around Chamberlain. Chamberlain would pass it out, get better positioning, have it passed back, pass it out, get better positioning, have it passed back, scores. The footage you saw in those clips is NOTHING like the actual footage of how Chamberlain played.
    Yes, you’re right though: if you throw Chamberlain, at 23, into the game today, he would NOT dominate. He’d probably be a fringe all-star for the first two or three years. However, like any great player, he’d adapt and become dominate. Like European players (or Americans playign in Europe, ask Jennings and Childress) it takes some time to adjust to a different style of play. It’s not instant. But Chamberlain could do it, no doubt.
    There are some factors you don’t acknowledge: Chamberlain is still bigger and more massive than most centers today. At 7’1, he’d tower over Dwight, Lee, Rasheed, Okur, Jermaine O’Neil, Bargniani, Okafor, etc. etc. It’s not like Chamberlain never played and dominated against people taller than him (ask Artis Gilmore).
    Chamberlain is also much more mobile. I mean, outside of Kareem, Shaq, Hakeem, Sampson… what centers do you know who would start and FINISH on a break? Chamberlain did that. Hell, in the 1972 WCF, Times said he was out-pacing and out-hussling Jabbar. Jabbar who played on the Showtime Lakers. Who was ten years younger than Chamberlain.
    Not droppin’ this, man, just to tell ya.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Peter
    Wilt was the same size as Shaq, just as athletic as Shaq, and he had more moves than Shaq.
    He freaking jumped HIGH JUMP.
    What is the factual basis you’re using to prove that Wilt Chamberlain could not physically compete with Shaq or the players in today’s NBA?

  • http://slam Allenp

    The fact is, there are more athletes in today’s League than there were in years past. That doesn’t mean there were NO athletes back in the day.
    What do you think Bill Russell was?

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: just an interesting note, Bill Walton was almost not allowed to go to the Olympics for basketball because he had just got drafted (but never signed, making him still a non-professional athlete). If he didn’t get to play basketball, he would have competed in TRACK-AND-FIELD IN THE OLYMPICS. He would have been a walk on. So yeah, he was althetic.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Jukai, you can respond to Peter, respond to my 1:30pm comment since you called me out for using Bird, since he WAS the Celtics.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    The Seed: You’d make an excellent point, if basketball was just scoring. Actual boxscore statistics:
    Larry 27.4 14 3.6 2.1
    McHale 15.4 11.4 1.3 1.6
    Parish 13.4 5.9 1.1 0.3
    73 FInals: Larry had more points, rebounds, assists, and steals than anyone
    McHale 26.0 10.7 1.3 0.3
    Larry 23.8 8.8 5.0 1.8
    Parish 17.2 9.0 2.0 1.0
    74 Finals: Larry bird has more assists and steals than anyone else
    McHale 25.8 8.5 1.7 0.8
    Larry 24.0 9.7 9.5 2.7
    Parish 12.7 6.8 1.0 0.5
    75 Finals: Larry has more rebounds, assists, and steals than anyone else (almost has a triple double)
    Larry 24.2 10.0 5.5 1.2
    McHale 20.5 9.0 2.0 0.2
    Parish 16.7 6.5 1.2 0.8
    76 Finals: Larry has mroe points, rebounds, assists and steals than anyone else
    I didn’t add anyone else because DJ and Ainge never got close to passing Larry’s statlines.
    Larry wasn’t a scorer. He was a COMPLETE player.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Relax there big guy, I’m responding.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    I agree with your complete player, stat line, but this is the NBA, scoring matters, Scottie Pippen was the greatest complete stat line player ever and he gets no respect. But you want Larry to get this respect, but people call him one of the greatest, not because he got rebounds and assists, because he could score. I feel based off of my stats, Larry had alot of HELP and winning only three rings to me should be questioned, just like Jerry west losing so many finals and being the logo, where he is know for scoring. I see your point, but Bird played with 3 HoFamers, come on, he had alot of help and for the best player on a team being outscored by his sidekicks is funny to me. I feel Bird should have had more rings with this talent, what you think, and be honest?

  • Peter

    Ok Jukai I conceded somewhat that he would adapt. But let me throw this one back…how would Shaq have looked if you put him in a game back then? More adapting? Less? Or for that matter, put Kobe in against West, Big O etc…

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    The Seed: First off, you’re a basktball fan. You should know that while scoring makes you a legend for the common non-fan, a complete STAT line makes you legendary for a basketball fan. Magic Johnsonly scored less than 20 a game. Why do you think some people call him the second best player ever?
    Secondly, you’re being unfair to the Celtics. In the 80s, they had three championships, two finals appearences, and two Eastern Conference appearences. That’s insane! Most teams can never accomplish this in a decade, never!
    Twice they did not make it, but once Bird missed the entire season. They also made a bad decision in trading away some key players for a high draft pick and then selecting Len Bias, instead of, well, let’s say someone who wasn’t going to die.
    Why did they not win more championships? Well, let’s take a look at the teams they played in the Finals and conference finals.
    The Magic of the decade arguably were the most well kept teams outside of the Celtics of the 60s, the Bulls of the 90s, and the Spurs of today.
    I mean, LOOK at the talent: Magic Johnson and Kareem Abdul Jabbar, both TOP TEN legendary players. They also circulated Jamal Wilks (underrated), Spencer Haywood (HOF), Michael Cooper (huge role player), Bob McAdoo (HOF), James Worthy (HOF), AC Green (big time champion player), Byron Scott, Kurt Rambis… c’mon! Ridiculous! They also lost twice to a Phili team with Julias Erving and Moses Malone, two huge hall of famous, along with Daryll Dawkins (probable HOF), Cheeks (underrated player), Andrew Toney, etc.
    The fact that the Celts won THREE championships during that era is pretty crazy in itself.
    You’re also overrating a lot of players. I mean, Kevin McHale was a BENCH player for most of the Celtics run! Really! He got the six man of the year award twice! He was only upgraded to a starter when Maxwell left and Bird moved down to small forward. Parish is vastly overrated and I can name 15-20 centers better than he was. DJ is underrated but still not anywhere near impressive enough to make up for the talent the Lakers had.
    And just to top it off, Scottie Pippen averaged 25-5.5-5.5-2-1 at his height. Larry Bird was 27-10-7-1.5-1 at his height. So, yeah, tell me who was a more complete stat player.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Peter: For Kobe, probably less than you imagine. Kobe would probably hit 35-37 a game, but be held back a bit with the lack of creativity he would be allowed to show on the offensive end. His rebounds would raise a bit, but his assists would plummet to just about 1-2 since it was much harder to get an assist in those days (those drop offs to cutters he gets would not count). Defensively, he’d kill guys, but nothing statistically would change
    Shaq, on the other hand, may average 45-25 with seven blocks a game. Right off the bat.
    Your point?

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    and the best complete statline player ever……..oscar robertson. 25, 7, 9. They didn’t keep steals & blocks until his last year…. but he averaged 1.1 steals. 25 7 9 is rediculous though

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    Did you mean Bill Russell when you typed Bill Walton?

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    Your argument about Bird is a little weak.
    Bird was the Celtics the same way Jordan was the Bulls.
    He was clearly the best player. The leader and the Mr. Fix it. But that doesn’t mean he didn’t have substantial help. This wasn’t Hakeem in his first championship year.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    Did Larry Bird have more help or less help than Isiah Thomas?

  • http://howdtheygetajob.com nbk

    more on offense less on defense

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    slam is screwed up

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: Yes, I did mean Russell.
    I think the Celtics were all-in-all better than Isiah’s Pistons but all-in-all had a much harder time winning the championships. I think Jordan and Bird BOTH were pretty way, way, way above anyone else on their team, to be honest. They had amazing teams, I just don’t think the talent there was comparable, to say, having Shaq and Kobe on the same team.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    Larry had WAY more help than Isiah…

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    I mean, if you look at the Celtics, Magic, 76ers and Rockets of the 80s, you can see that the 90s (outside of the Bulls and possible the Jazz) did not have ANYTHING comparable to them.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    My 4:10 post wasn’t me btw…slam’s gotta fix this…

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    thats was me, and i was saying that because my comment was coming up. Apparently slam is really screwed up. My bad Wayno I didn’t notice

  • http://www.slamonline.com nbk

    *wasn’t

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    It’s all good

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    McHale came off the bench because he played the same position as Bird and they were hesitant to move Bird to the three early in his career. He was still killing.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: I agree McHale deserves MOST of the hype he gets. My big problem is with Parish. I don’t think the dude was a good center at all, and I think he was the way he was because of DJ/Archibald, Bird, and McHale.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    Isiah had to go through Bird, Magic and whole bunch of the cats you named. He also had to hold off Jordan and Ewing to get his.
    Isiah had less talent, and won one less ring. And that’s mainly because he effed up his ankle that one year.
    Honestly, I think Isiah Thomas’s career is one of the most underrated in the history of basketball.
    I think Larry Bird is slightly, just slightly overrated. And I think the argument that he didn’t have a stacked team, when compared to everybody else in the league besides the Lakers, well that doesn’t hold water. Without a doubt, Magic played with the best talent in the league, but Bird was pretty damn close.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    Honestly, I agree with you that Parish and McHale are a little overhyped. But that happens to all great players.
    Do people even talk about the fact that Bird and Magic were subpar individual defenders and that Magic was streaky as hell at shooting? Nah, cause their legends.
    Parish put up nice numbers and was a key cog in the middle for a team that dominated in the half court. You can’t knock what he did.
    Besides, who on the Pistons team was the equal of either McHale or Parrish?

  • http://slam Allenp

    As far as Kobe or Shaq dominating from jump, I don’t know.
    Many of the moves we consider perfectly legal and acceptable today were outlawed back in the day.
    No jump stops, no palming, lots of little things that today’s players have incorporated into the game, which would be outlawed back in the day.
    I think it would require and adjustment for any player to jump eras.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: Rodman was easily equal to Parish. McHale was probably better than anyone on the Pistons team but Dumars WAS inducted to the hall of fame, dude was an incredible defender, solid jumper too. Sure, the Celts are a better team, there is no one then comparable to DJ/Archibald (Lambier is another dude who is way overrated) but as I’ve mentioned, the teams that the Celtics had to go through were SUPERIOR to the competition the Pistons faught. Just… way way better!
    I give Parish props, he’d be an instant starter on 90% of the teams in the L (not counting the Orlando, Houston and Phoenix). But people saying he’s a top ten center? Good lord, no.

  • Gerhard

    Kobe is a great player. But he IS NOT THAT GREAT OF A PLAYER. I agree with one of the comments here (i forgot who, sorry bout that) that Kobe can’t win no $**t without the addition of Pau Gasol. Hell, they were struggling last year before Pau came in. Had Pau not been added by to the team, they wouldn’t even be in the finals last year. And because Pau was healthy this year, they again made it to the finals. Take Pau away, & I don’t think you will the same results.

    KOBE IS ALL HYPE! Just as LBJ is all hype too(but that’s another story).

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: Isiah played an injured Lakers and an even MORE injured Celtics. Hell, one of those years, Bird didn’t even play the season to lose to the Pistons. Jordan’s team was Miami-bad, and honestly, Ewing’s team may have been the second best team of that era. But once again, the Pistons team was pretty stacked too… Isiah, Dumars, Aguirre, Rodman and Lambier is a FANTASTIC starting five, I mean downright fantastic. Don’t forget the Microwave coming off the bench!

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    And just for arguments sake: Jabbar, Chamberlain, Russell, Shaq, Hakeem, Malone, Walton, Robisnon, Ewing, Reed, Lanier, Cowens, Thurmond, Gilmore, Haywood, Bellamy, Unseld, Howard, Sabonis, Issell, Yao. Which ten guys is Parish better than? Which five?

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    I really should give Isiah more credit than I do, I guess.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    The runs of the Piston and the Celtics overlapped.
    Isiah was drafted in 1981, Bird and Magic were picked in 1979. They were contemporaries. They went through the same teams. Isiah had to go through Bird because Bird came into a situation that allowed his team to progress faster.
    Isiah was RIGHT there with Bird in the East, despite having less talent. And he managed to overcome Bird’s Celtics three times, and also managed to knock of Magic’s Lakers for good measure.
    You seem to missing the point that Isiah and Bird came up together. This wasn’t like Jordan and Bird, or Jordan and Magic. This is like Shaq and KG. Or Shaq and Alonzo.
    And Rodman was a superior rebounder to Parish, but I think Parish was the superior overall player.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Parish played in the NBA All-Star Game nine times, finished among the top 10 in the league in field goal percentage for six consecutive seasons, topped 10 rebounds per game in eight seasons and averaged better than 15 points in nine campaigns. In 1981-82 he recorded a career-high average of 19.9 ppg and he averaged a career-best 12.5 rpg in 1988-89.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: That is a terrible way to look at it. What does it matter that they are contemporaries? Bird has had a far greater amount of success in a far shorter career, and Isiah’s success only came at a time when the Celtics and Lakers were full of injuries and retirements, same with the other two big teams in the 80s, Philidelphia (almost completely retired by then) and Houston (ask Ralph Sampson how he was doing). When the Pistons began owning the league, Bird had developed back problems that, two years later, caused him to retire. Bird, all things considering, didn’t have a very long career.
    I also know the way I described things above were certainly a terrible way to look at things too: Bird had a better team than Isiah, always. Once again though, Isiah’s team was still STACKED with two other hall of famers and they played lesser competition to get their championships. They never played the Lakers or Celtics from the early to mid 80s. They didn’t. They played a mostly retired and vastly injured substitute.
    Also, sub-point: How many defensive player of the year awards did Parish win? None? Oh, well, perhaps Parish isn’t as overall superior as you thought.
    I didn’t ask you for Parishs’ bio, I asked who on that list he was better than.

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    So, you’re saying that Magic and Bird didn’t benefit from injuries and retirements?
    It matter that they were contemporaries because that means that Isiah didn’t just “catch” Bird and Magic on the decline, he fought with them his whole career and carved out his own niche of success.
    “In the 1985 NBA Playoffs, Thomas and his team went to the conference semi-finals against the 15-time NBA champion Boston Celtics led by Larry Bird, Kevin McHale, Robert Parish, and Dennis Johnson. Detroit couldn’t shake the Celtics in their six-game series, eventually losing.

    In the 1987 NBA Playoffs, Thomas and the Pistons went to the Eastern Conference Finals and faced the Boston Celtics. It was the farthest the team had advanced since moving from Fort Wayne when they were the Zollner-Pistons. The Pistons were able to tie the Celtics at two games apiece. Detroit’s hope of winning Game 5 was dashed at the Boston Garden with seconds remaining in a play by Larry Bird: Thomas attempted to quickly inbound the ball, Larry Bird stole the inbound pass and passed it to Dennis Johnson for the game-winning layup.

    In 1988 the Pistons’ first trip to the Finals saw them face the Los Angeles Lakers, who were led by Magic Johnson, James Worthy, and Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Prior to the series, Thomas and Johnson would exchange a courtside kiss on the cheek prior to tip-off as a sign of their deep friendship. After taking a 3-2 series lead back to Los Angeles, Detroit appeared poised to win their first NBA title in Game 6.”

    Obviously, Isiah was going head to head with Bird, with less talent, and eventually beat him. Where are you getting this stuff about his only “success” coming when Bird and Magic were hurt? Are you only defining success as championships? Injuries happen, whose fault is it Larry Bird’s body was giving out less than 10 years into his career?

  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    You were hyperbolic in your comments about the talent Bird had around him. That was my point. He wasn’t THE Celtics. He was the man on his team, but he had a GREAT team.

  • Jackie Moon

    I will now use the names Michael Jordan and Kobe Bryant in the same sentence.

  • jrb

    Pau cant win without kobe

  • Rnz

    I think that skill wise, purely skill wise, Kobe is better than Jordan..Kobe got better handles, shoot the 3s better..but what truly separates MJ from the rest of players ever to bounce a Spalding (or Molten, Mikasa, whatever) is his mentality..I’ve said this before, MJ is the only player that played better when he was angry ,consistently….with that being said, the closest player to MJ by far is Kobe

  • http://fjdkslf.com Jukai

    Allenp: You can just say you’re holding Larry Bird’s injuries against him dude. That’s entirely fair: T-Mac, in his few years in the league, was one of the best small forwards ever, Grant Hill too… but because they were only at their height for so few years, no one considers them truly great. Bird did not have one of those 20 year careers. If you factor that in, then I can understand why you underrate Bird as you do. Even still, it’s my opinion (and well, pretty much the opinion of the entire f*cking sports world) that if the Celtics hadn’t been so injury ravaged, the Pistons would NOT have beat the Celtics. Likewise, if the 1990 Pistons played the 1985 Celtics, they’d probably get creamed.
    You really seem to nag me for not mentioning all the talent Bird had on his team (he was on an immense team, but I think the individual talent on that team is very overrated) but you don’t seem to acknowledge Isiah playing with one HoFer (Joe Dumars), another probable future HoFer (Dennis Rodman), and two immense role players in Agguire and Lambier. That’s a really, really talented team. How is Bird overrated (for averaging 23-10-6 his entire career) while Isiah is underrated (19-3-9). I don’t think people give him enough credit on how much he career his team. Once again though, he had a great team.

  • Gerhard

    @RNZ >> NOBODY’S greater than His Airness! MJ plays for & with the team. KOBE PLAYS FOR SELF GRATIFICATION. He wants to prove to the world that he is better than MJ, or Shaq or whoever else played and/or is playing the game of basketball. KOBE IS ALL HYPE!!! He is a product of the ‘marketing geniuses’ out there. The shoe company he endorses (I don’t want to say their name because they are not paying me to do so), needs or wants a new player that could continue what MJ has given them. The league definitely misses MJ, and they need someone else’s name to bring people’s interests in the game. MJ was a really big loss to the game when he retired. And NOBODY, I mean NOBODY CAN FILL MJ’s giant shoes he left behind.

  • Rnz

    @Gerhard : My point exactly mate…What makes MJ GOAT is not all about skills..He had incredible skills and to that, he added ridiculous competitiveness and a one of a kind mental toughness to the mix…..Skill wise, Kobe and LeBron is ahead of MJ, but those two still lacking in the two latter categories..and to be honest, I dont think anyone can ever live up to MJ’s standard of competitiveness and mental toughness..that is why MJ is GOAT

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Rnz: Lebron is certainly not ahead of MJ in skill. Kobe is debatable. I would say, while Kobe is faster with a crossover, Jordan employed more moves to get to the basket, behind the backs, hop steps, moves that Kobe uses, but very infrequently, so it’s debatable who was a better ballhandler. And while Jordan was an awful three point shooter when he came out of college, he vastly improved on that area during his later years, once shooting 50%(!!!!!) percent from the three. 50%!
    So, think carefully before you declare that Kobe is more skilled than Jordan. I’m not going to disagree, but I think there is an argument.

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Old School Baller

    Interesting how the media has given so much credit to Kobe Bryant for winning this title. The LA title run was sealed when they got Pau Gasol, an All-Star big man, and gave up nothing in return. Pre-Gasol the Lakers were an above average team, at best. In today’s NBA, quality big men like Gasol and Lamar Odom are scarce. Then also throw in a 7’1″ (another big body) which along with Kobe, the Lakers are the most talented team in the league. Only Boston with a healthy KG and Leon Powe could have matched up with them talent wise. Credit the Memphis Grizzlies who basically handed Gasol to the Lakers for this championship.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Right, OSB, we should not give any credit to Kobe, none at all. Idiot. If you think the team was anything other than a 7th seed without Kobe, you’re dillusional.

  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno
  • http://slam Allenp

    Jukai
    I’m nagging you for saying that Bird was “THE CELTICS.”
    You tend to get hyperbolic. This was a case of that.
    I think Bird was the leader of his team, I think Hakeem CARRIED his team to a ring in 1994. There is a difference.
    I don’t think Isiah carried his team either, I just think he less overall talent than Bird, and he never had a really great big man to lean on. That’s all. I think Isiah’s playing career has been overshadowed by his time as a coach and executive and I find that sad.

  • Peter
  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai

    Allenp: Okay, co-sign. To me, when I say Bird was the CELTICS, I meant to say his talent far overshadowed any other player on the team. I don’t mean to say he is like Chris Bosh of today or Kobe in 2005 or AI in 2000… where if they are out, then literally no one can score or perform. I’m just trying to say that this wasn’t a Shaq-Kobe duo that Larry Bird had. Bird had an incredible championship-level team, who could make a run in the playoffs without Bird. They had a legit 2-10 rotation. But it was Bird who turned that team into a legendary team.
    Isiah doesn’t get enough credit, I do agree.

  • http://dsjklff.com Jukai
  • http://www.slamonline.com wayno

    “Lost his virginity at age 52, to Ron Harper”…LMAO

  • Jackie Moon

    Larry only has two Finals MVPS? Right now, Kobe’s only made a small step in his legacy, but if he gets another Finals MVP, it will vault him even higher than this year’s step up.

  • http://www.kb24.com The Seed

    Thank you Jackie Moon, thats what I was trying to tell Jukai about Larry, he had more help than people realize.

  • Rnz

    @Jukai: Got me there mate, Im too lazy to look up the stats :D ..

  • Matul9

    I really hate it when people say ‘this guy can’t win without that guy’. it sounds really dumb. NOBODY can win the title without SOMEBODY else good beside them! it’s a team sport, this ain’t WWE!
    MJ didn’t win his titles playing one-on-five, he didn’t win his titles playing with a bunch of guys on the rec center, he had good players supporting him and accepting their roles. They’re all cogs that make their team a championship caliber team. Obviously some cogs are larger than others, and that’s the Man of that team.
    So the question is not whether A can win without B(which he of course can’t), but is A the Man of his team?

    -Magic & Cap wouldn’t have won their titles without Worthy etc.
    -MJ wouldn’t have won without Pippen etc.
    -Shaq wouldn’t've won without KB8 etc.
    -KB24 wouldnt’ve won without Pau etc.

    All of those players mentioned first in the sentences are the Man in their respective teams, which is the only thing that matters when we’re talking individual accolade/respect/whatever.
    Because while they didn’t win their championship(s)without their teammates, they were the unquestioned leaders of their respective teams,the number 1 reason their teams won, and that’s what matters.

  • http://www.supremenyc.com Waylonakolipse

    Why are you guys talking about the 80′s Celtics? LOL, anyways Kobe is mad skilled. I think he’s the most skilled player in the NBA because he can score 30ppg on jumpshots. But he’s losing athletic ability and he can’t physically dominate and bang on fools anymore. In reality LeBron and Wade are now more effective than Kobe. As an individual player Kobe is slipping, it’s a good thing he has such a strong team to support him in his old age hahaha! But as for a 5th ring? Well if Odom leaves I don’t see it happening. Fisher has 1 good year left, Bynum is gimpy, and Ariza is playing like a potential future All-Star but this was a contract year for him. And I don’t see him maintaining that level of drive. Plus they’d have to beat the Celtics and that isn’t happening. Why? Because Garnett stomps Pau, Rondo has become a beast at pg, and Pierce ‘n Allen are better than Kobe ‘n Ariza as a combo. Bynum and Perkins will ram into eachother and foul out and the Celtics bench > Lakers bench.

  • http://www.newyorkshockexchange.com Old School Baller

    Jukai, it appears you have “politics” in your future . . . attribute sophomoric statements to me and take a position as if you are correcting. Kobe is Kobe, but pre-Gasol there was speculation that he wanted out of LA, hoping for a chance to win a title elsewhere. I stand by what I said earlier – Memphis had as much to do with this Chip as anybody else.

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