Kobe Bryant Wants High School Basketball to Improve

by December 17, 2010

Bean, who was honored by his high school last night, laments how young American ball players are brought up through the system compared to their European counterparts. Yahoo! reports: “On the Los Angeles Lakers’ preseason trip to Barcelona, Kobe Bryant watched the young kids with a basketball and marveled over the differences in the development of too many players in the States. ‘Every single one, it seemed – the 8-year-old, the 9-year-olds – go left and they go right,’ Bryant said. ‘The older ones shoot the jump hook with the left, and they shoot the jump hook with the right. You’ve got bigger kids who can shoot from the outside, who can handle the ball and play. A lot of young players that look like [Pau] Gasol, who are just so skilled. And now, you’ve got kids here in the States, 20 years old, who can’t do those things. Damn, you’ve got max players who can’t do that’ … ‘I really had a great high school coach,’ Bryant said. ‘I really had a great high school. I had the will to learn the game, but he had the knowledge to teach me the game. He would get there early to work with me on the basic things: midrange game, footwork. But these kids now, the coaches are catering to the star players. They don’t want to tell them when they’re messing up. They don’t want to correct things. They end up skating through things in AAU [Amateur Athletic Union], and go to college and still have all these weaknesses in their game. I don’t like it. I don’t like it. I think it’s a system thing we need to address in the United States.'”