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Kobe Bryant admits to self-doubt? Well, as close as he will ever get.

Oct 7, 2013, 3:11 PM EST

Kobe Bryant AP

Part of the reason Kobe Bryant is Kobe Bryant is an unwavering self-confidence — he has put in the work, he believes in what he can do and sometimes that means he trusts himself shooting a contested shot over a double team than it does hitting the open man (when that man was Smush Parker, could you blame him?).

All through his recovery from a ruptured Achilles tendon Kobe has been his same confident, competitive self, talking about destroying the timeline for his return.

But even he has to wonder if he will be the same. He showed a glimpse of during an interview in China this summer found by Mark Medina of the Los Angeles Daily News.

“As I sit here with you now, I’m telling you now I’ll come back 100 percent,” Bryant said in a recent appearance in China. “But I don’t know if I’m sure. I have moments and days where I doubt myself….

“The people who say they will never come back from this injury, to me, that says if they had this injury, they would quit,” Bryant said. “That’s what it means to me. If they sit here and look at me and say I can’t do it, that means if it happened to you, you wouldn’t do it. I have to show them just as much as I show people who support me that this can be done and I can come back from this. By me coming back, it shows the people who doubt me to reconsider what’s possible.”

A more human Kobe who has these questions in his head is little more relatable. We’ll see how long that lasts. 

Kobe recently went to Germany for Oktoberfest, er, to get platelet-rich plasma therapy on his right knee. (I’m sure the timing is coincidental, but if he had a liter-beer while there, could you blame him?) He has been driven in his return as he always has been. He will come back, no doubt.

Will he be quite the same player? That’s another question for another day, but any playoff hopes the Lakers have hinge on it.

  1. datcrazybok - Oct 7, 2013 at 4:34 PM

    It’ll be just like the older Jordan. Like Mike said, Kobe steals all of his moves. He’ll come back as the fadeaway jumper expert just like Mike did. He’ll never be the above the rim, jump over you, and stuff it in your face Kobe. But, he’s 35 years old. I think he’ll come back, and he’ll use his intelligence to be effective. Not like he used to do, but he’ll still be effective.

  2. cfutch - Oct 7, 2013 at 4:43 PM

    KOBE!! *Dave Chappelle Voice*

  3. antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 4:47 PM

    This guy. Nobody cares that much, Kobr. And not only that, but 35 year old Kobe at 100% was never going to be that great anyway, so…

    • freddysanford - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:57 PM

      I care

      • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:59 PM

        You really don’t. Like every other Lakers fan, you know that Kobe’s time has come and gone. It wouldn’t have mattered if he came back 150% or 70%. Results are going to be the same for the Lakers.

      • Anoesis - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:40 PM

        You’re an arrogant ass to assume you know what others think and feel. You sound just like the quitter Bryant was describing. “It’ll never work. We’re doomed.” You must be loads of fun at parties.

    • asimonetti88 - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:21 PM

      For someone who doesn’t care that much about Kobe, you sure post about him a lot.

    • lhollis74 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:13 AM

      Is that why clicked on the article, read it, and then typed a response?

      • antistratfordian - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:31 AM

        Oh you two (lhollis74, asimonetti88) can do better than that. I’ve been doing this too long for these generic types of responses to have any bite.

      • loungefly74 - Oct 8, 2013 at 11:22 AM

        antistratfordian, AKA dramaqueen, is probably a huge Smush Parker fan…it still hurts him.

  4. divan22 - Oct 7, 2013 at 4:51 PM

    Hopefully he doesn’t start doubting himself on the court. Lakers opponents feast on his abysmal shooting % in clutch situations. Keep shooting, Mamba!

    “Between 2000 and 2012, Kobe shot by far the highest number of attempts (230) in the final minute of games with a margin of five points or fewer for regular season games. Of those 230 attempts, he only made 80 of them. 80/230 puts him at a mediocre 34.8%, only slightly above the atrocious league average of 33.7%.”

    http://www.poundingtherock.com/2013/9/9/4683058/kobe-bryant-clutch-stephen-hawking

    • topdawg4ever - Oct 7, 2013 at 5:57 PM

      Thank you, Divan, for dis-spelling the myth that Kobe is “clutch”.

    • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 6:06 PM

      But… if the league average is 33.7% then Kobe’s 34.8% is above average. Just sayin’

    • lhollis74 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:23 AM

      Ok, so only Lebron is comparable, same number of makes with 11 fewer shots. Typical, stat geek that uses number to downplay a particular individual, but fails to acknowledge those same numbers fail to elevate any other player above said individual. By the way, conventional wisdom suggest the majority of lebron’s shots were driving to the rim, while Kobe’s were jump shots. It’s not as if the article referenced any other players ther than Lebron and amare stoudamire. Are you kidding, stoudamire? L

      • divan22 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:21 PM

        Psst… the goal on offense, when attempting to score 2 points, is to take the easiest shot closest to the basket as possible.

        If the majority of LeBron’s shots are closer to the basket while Kobe’s jacking long jumpers, do you know what that means? Advantage: LeBron.

        Amazing what the Kobe Cult comes up with to defend their boy.

    • borderline1988 - Oct 8, 2013 at 10:13 AM

      It’s amazing that the league-average shooting% goes down that much in the last few minutes of a game. I know there are many factors that could be contributing to that, but my guess is that the biggest ones involve hustle and attentiveness on defense.

      If only multi-millionaire NBA players hustled on defense like that for the whole game.

      • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:23 PM

        The biggest change is that teams stop running any semblance of offense. They just run the shot clock down and take an isolation shot.

  5. lakerade - Oct 7, 2013 at 4:57 PM

    Kobe flashed this introspective uncertainty when he vented via social media on the night he suffered the injury. He is most certainly human, but to him that is no excuse, and that is why we pay attention, regardless of which way we’re rooting. I’m sure diehard Kobe fans in China took it as old news too as there are dedicated efforts there that cover and translate Kobe’s every move to feed the ever increasing basketball appetite in Asia.

  6. lakerade - Oct 7, 2013 at 5:07 PM

    divan22 Kobe got five chips in that time span, went to the Finals 7 times. Keep it up Mamba!

    • divan22 - Oct 7, 2013 at 5:28 PM

      Never said he wasn’t a great player, did I? One of the best SG ever and someone I’ve thoroughly enjoyed watching for 17 years.

      He’s fearless but he’s not clutch like his reputation suggests. Numbers don’t lie. The Lakers would be better off if he wasn’t so predictable in those situations. His need to be “the man” has hurt the Lakers more than it’s helped them.

    • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 6:12 PM

      “Kobe got five chips in that time span”

      Thank you, Shaq & Pau!!!

      ===================================

      Jordan – 6 Rangs
      • Led 6 championship teams in Win Share 

      Magic – 5 Rangs
      • Led 4 championship teams in Win Share 

      Duncan – 4 Rangs
      • Led 4 championship teams in Win Share 

      Shaq – 4 Rangs
      • Led 3 championship teams in Win Share 

      Bird – 3 Rangs
      • Led 2 championship teams in Win Share

      LeBron – 2 Rangs
      • Led 2 championship team in Win Share 

      Gasol – 2 Rangs
      • Led 2 championship teams in Win Share 

      Kobe 5 Rings
      • Has never led a championship team in Win Share :(

    • sportsfan18 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:20 PM

      He may thank Shaq for 3 of the titles and 4 of the Finals appearances.

  7. papichulo55 - Oct 7, 2013 at 5:53 PM

    Dugan, enough with the stats. Give me some quotes from Kobes’ opponents over the years. Give us the list of players who go on record as saying that Kobe can’t Ball. God knows he has given the public enough reasons to not like him, and its OK if you don’t. Just spare us your ‘Statistical Proof’ that he is not a special talent. Thanks

    • topdawg4ever - Oct 7, 2013 at 5:59 PM

      Nobody was saying he isn’t a great player. But the MYTH that Kobe is clutch is one of the main things Kobe’s fans talk about. And the STATS prove it’s wrong.

    • divan22 - Oct 7, 2013 at 6:26 PM

      Never said he “can’t ball” or that he’s not a “special talent”. I merely commented on the false myth that he’s Mr. Clutch.

      I’m sorry, but you can’t have it both ways.

      You can’t call Kobe “clutch” but then ignore the STATISTICAL PROOF that he isn’t clutch. Maybe if he wasn’t so selfishly predictable in those situations he’d make more than 34.8% of those shots.

      The real reason this myth has been perpetuated by his fans is because it elevates his status when his own play can’t do the trick. Who cares that LeBron is STATISTICALLY a FAR superior player??? He ain’t clutch like the Mamba!!!

    • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:52 PM

      “enough with the stats. Give me some quotes from Kobes’ opponents over the years.”

      As if quotes are more definitive proof than makes and misses. You either make the shots are you don’t – there really is no room for interpretation. When it comes to quotes, the perception is skewed by selective memory.

      If someone were to say something like, “Kobe is 3 for 14 in game winning shot attempts under 10 seconds in the playoffs” perception doesn’t factor… that’s just a fact. No one remember the 11 misses though, they remember the 3 makes.

      • redbaronx - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:03 AM

        @antistratfordian – Well, you could say the same about anyone. Every player. What about MJ throwing the ball out of bounds against Orlando in 95 to lose the series? Granted he wasn’t fully back up to speed, but every player has spectacular failings. Boneheaded plays are not reserved for NBA journeymen.

        The only problem I have with this myth of Kobe being clutch is that people try to compare and elevate him to MJ. Let’s be candid. There were two people that I can remember that you absolutely did not want to have with the ball in their hands regardless of stats. MJ and Larry Bird. Not because of stats. But if it was an important game and you needed a bucket, those guys seemed to make the play when their team absolutely needed a bucket. Like Bird’s steal and pass to DJ vs. the Pistons in the 87 conference finals when the Celtics were on the verge of going down 3-2. Or MJ’s pass to Paxson in Game 6 of the ’93 Finals.

        You want to talk about asking players? Ask MJ or anyone else in the league in 92/93 about a guy named Drazan Petrovic. I saw Drazan in Europe and if Drazan had lived I think we’d be talking about him and the Nets playing the Bulls in the 90′s rather than the Knicks. The guy was a stone cold killer competitor. When LeBron was asked about the greatest European player, did he say Nowitzki? Tony Parker? Any of the current guys? Nope. Drazan. Even LeBron knows.

        Kobe may be the greatest offensive player of his time, but if we’re talking clutch players? There have been better. By stat, by moment, or by asking players, any measuring stick you want. Kobe is one of the greatest. He’s just not the clutch player Laker fans would have you believe. Sometimes clutch is drawing the double team and hitting your teammate under the basket for a free uncontested layup. Kobe STILL hasn’t learned how to cut his laser shooting focus to make the pass.

        See? No stats…..just insight.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 9, 2013 at 7:48 PM

        “There were two people that I can remember that you absolutely did not want to have with the ball in their hands regardless of stats. MJ and Larry Bird. Not because of stats. But if it was an important game and you needed a bucket, those guys seemed to make the play when their team absolutely needed a bucket.”

        The problem with this passage though is your use of the word “seemed.” Kobe fans will tell you that it “seems” the same way with Mamba. How do you counter that? Stats.

        It also “seemed” like LeBron used to always pass up critical shots. That was also incorrect. How did we know? Stats.

        “Nope. Drazan. Even LeBron knows.”

        Everybody knows Drazen. But the argument in favor of Drazen in this regard is the same method that led to Kobe Bryant being considered super-clutch. Amorphous word of mouth praise very loosely based on actual events. Today we have people talking about Drazen being the greatest European player ever, as if this should be self-evident. Sure, he lit up Yugoslavian leagues, but guess what? Drazen was not a great NBA player.

        How do I know? :) You know how.

        The opinion of LeBron James or Reggie Miller (“Drazen is the best shooter in history!”) cannot alter facts.

        “See? No stats…..just insight.”

        That’s not insight. You want to be insightful? When you say something like “Drazen is the greatest European player” – back it up with fresh illumination of tangible facts i.e. translating relevant numbers in a way not previously approached that gives us a fresh angle into his greatness. Couple that with a quote or two from respected sources that bolsters the argument of your virgin angle and you may have genuine insight.

        But quoted opinions on their own are useless unless it’s bolted to a solid foundation that can withstand scrutiny.

      • redbaronx - Oct 10, 2013 at 10:18 PM

        I love how much gibberish you put into that. And if you really wanted to go the stat way, Kobe isn’t clutch. There are plenty of stats out there that negate that.

        You’re right about Drazen. But it seems that you don’t even know he was a great NBA player. He was putting it all together in his last season before he died putting up an average of 22.3 for the Nets in the 92/93 season which was 11th best in the league. At 27 he was only going to get better. The fact that you obviously don’t know that he was a GREAT NBA player just shows that you shouldn’t be talking on this subject. Period. NBA players say Drazan was great, and they don’t qualify it with him being European. Who are you to argue? Seriously.

        The reason it isn’t insight to you is that you don’t know ball very obviously. Since you need stats to open your eyes, I just gave you some. Go chew on the stats. If you don’t know what you’re talking about, don’t comment. It just makes you look silly.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 11, 2013 at 11:35 PM

        Who am I to argue? I’m someone who knows better. I don’t care about what NBA players say when they’re wrong. They will tell you about Kobe being the best in the clutch and they will be wrong about that too.

        At the time of Petrovic’s death he was 28 and had a career PER average of 16.4. His rookie season he put up a 15.5 PER and at age 28 he put up a 17.3 PER – not a major improvement and neither are impressive numbers. He was not likely going to be putting up anything much better than that going into his 30s. One word comes to mind: Middling.

        In 1992 Petrovic wasn’t even considered the best European player in the world. That title belonged to Toni Kukoc. Kukoc ended up a much better NBA player than Petrovic. In just his 2nd season with the Bulls Toni Kukoc had put up a season greater than anything Petrovic had done with the Nets, and he would then eclipse that the next year. He would even go on to put up equal or better seasons playing on teams like Milwaukee.

        As far as European players go, Dirk Nowitzki is a lot better than both of them (obviously).

      • redbaronx - Oct 13, 2013 at 2:03 PM

        OMG! You’re a complete MORON!!!

        A) Toni didn’t enter the NBA until the 93/94 season when Jordan retired!!!
        B) You’re completely delusional! Show me a single article from 92/93 saying Kukoc was the better player! I lived those years so don’t give me your nonsense! You probably didn’t even know who Drazan was until I mentioned him and you looked him up!
        C) I don’t ever remember Kukoc being 11th in the league in scoring! Prove me wrong…..
        D) Dirk had a full career and didn’t die mid-career, and you obviously never saw Drazan play a game in your life.
        E) Believe me, even the worst knuckleheads in the NBA know more than you. And believe me, you DON’T know better than them.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 14, 2013 at 11:23 PM

        Believe you!? Why should anyone believe you? You are nothing but an annoyance with a unsophisticated point of view.

        The chance of any NBA player current or retired being as intelligent as antistratfordian is slim to none. And prime antistratfordian could probably show some of them a thing or two on the court as well (prime me was a looong time ago, but a genuine freak of nature – you’re not quite appreciating who you’re talking to).

        In any case…

        • By 1992 Toni Kukoc had 3 Mr. Europa awards (European Player of the Year Award – regardless of league). He won those 3 consecutively, the only time that has ever been done. Petrovic only had 1 from 1986.

        “You had to feel sorry for Toni Kukoc. Croatia’s — and Europe’s — best basketball player is accustomed to being a king on the court. But Monday night at the Olympics, he became an innocent victim… For want of a better focus, the NBA All-Stars had decided that Toni Kukoc was Public Enemy No. 1.” –Alan Greenberg, The Hartford Courant, July 28, 1992

        “Croatia’s team will include Toni Kukoc, widely recognized as the best player in Europe; Drazen Petrovic; Dino Radja; and Stojko Vrankovic…” –Jack McCallum, Sports Illustrated, March 23, 1992

      • redbaronx - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:11 PM

        @antistratfordian – Now everyone can see you’re insane! No NBA player as smart as you? Besides you keep being slippery with facts.

        1) You completely ignored what we were talking about because I nailed you on the fact that Kukoc didn’t play in the NBA at the same time as Drazan.
        2) Your quotes mean absolutely nothing. Again you ignored my comment about Drazan being 11th in the NBA in scoring in 92/93 to destroy your argument of Kukoc being a better NBA player. And I can see it now. You’ll say he played with Pippen and Jordan. Well in 93/94 he only had Pippen and scrubs for a team and plenty of chances to score.
        3) For the two quotes that you came up with, I could find a million of players that say Drazan was THE best European player of his era. You know it, and I know it.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 16, 2013 at 7:15 PM

        “…because I nailed you on the fact that Kukoc didn’t play in the NBA at the same time as Drazan.”

        I didn’t mention that because it’s irrelevant. Kukoc was still winning all the Mr. Europa awards when Petrovic was in the NBA (you can still win that award if you’re in the NBA, but Petrovic wasn’t then up to it). Kukoc then won it again while on the Bulls. Kukoc ended up with 4 total. Petrovic has 2.

        “…you ignored my comment about Drazan being 11th in the NBA in scoring in 92/93 to destroy your argument of Kukoc being a better NBA player.”

        Averaging more points ≠ better player. I didn’t realize you were still in the basketball equivalent of elementary school.

        “For the two quotes that you came up with, I could find a million of players that say Drazan was THE best European player of his era. You know it, and I know it.”

        You have to remember that in 1992 Petrovic had not yet had his best NBA season. When the 1992 Olympics rolled around Petrovic’s NBA career had been mostly terrible with one year of potential finally showing.

        “And what kind of player was Petrovic when he first came to the Trailblazers and the NBA? A lousy one. It took him two years, and a trade to the Nets, before he adjusted from the softer, less physical European style…” – Hartford Courant, 1992

        Kukoc, on the other hand, was then being referred to as “Euro-Jordan” and still an NBA mystery. He had just won 3 Mr. Europa awards in a row (first time in history) – and he was blessed with the rare combination of being 6’11 with guard skills and a good shot (kind of like Durant before Durant). So Toni was BY FAR the much more intriguing player in 1992 whereas Drazen had already been exposed.

        So I’m not sure you’re going to find many, if any, hall of famers writers like Jack McCallum saying that Petrovic was Croatia’s best player in 1992.

      • redbaronx - Oct 21, 2013 at 11:42 AM

        @antistratfordian – You can continue with your long responses. The fact is I keep blowing you up. One would think you’d have the common sense to stop making yourself look ridiculous!

      • antistratfordian - Oct 21, 2013 at 4:24 PM

        Keep trying, brother.

      • redbaronx - Oct 21, 2013 at 6:00 PM

        The sad thing is I don’t need to try. You’re comments are just nonsensical.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 21, 2013 at 6:08 PM

        Nope. Try again.

      • redbaronx - Oct 21, 2013 at 6:14 PM

        “Nope. Try again.”

        More proof you are immature and lacking of intellect.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 21, 2013 at 6:20 PM

        You have no argument. Just adjectives, thinking those alone can make a point. Nope. Try again.

      • redbaronx - Oct 22, 2013 at 12:46 AM

        I just made the argument which was so simple and spot on. “Nope. Try again” yet again. You’re hilariously stupid and overmatched! Or delusional. I can’t decide which!

      • antistratfordian - Oct 22, 2013 at 1:17 AM

        Your intellect can only manage name calling. I’m not just sitting here and calling you things like “nonsensical” and “immature” and “stupid.” I can explain to you in great detail exactly how you are nonsensical, immature and stupid. In fact, that’s what I’ve been doing this entire time with my “long responses.” The same ones that have you frustrated and forced you to retreat to short emotional responses that contain no counter-argument whatsoever.

        Checkmate. End of story. Have a nice life.

      • redbaronx - Oct 22, 2013 at 1:19 AM

        Please. Seek help!

      • redbaronx - Oct 22, 2013 at 1:20 AM

        …..by the way. Notice how all of your comments get thumbs down. Get a clue!

  8. golfrangeman - Oct 7, 2013 at 6:48 PM

    Divan22 is 100% correct. Kobe is a great player, one of the best, but as good a shooter as he is his % is to low because he takes too many bad shots and he can be too predictable at times. I remember a game against the Celtics, close game 1 or 2 point lead for the C’s. I knew there was very little chance L.A would pull it out. Kobe took the last few shots double teamed. I think the last one was blocked.game over.

  9. papichulo55 - Oct 7, 2013 at 7:05 PM

    Does Moves end-of-game stats also factor in the stats of his teammates? Do you think foul shooting efficiency has anything to do with end-of-game strategy? Don’t stop your Statistical analysis when it matches your bias. Be 100 with it. Has LBJ played with key teammates who had major foul shooting problems?

  10. sportsfan18 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    Doesn’t matter if he comes back at 100% or not…

    Whatever level he is at, Kobe will THINK he’s at 100% and still the best thing since sliced bread.

  11. jimeejohnson - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:21 PM

    No Laker fan but no hater, either. You guys who say Kobe ain’t clutch probably missed the many times Kobe sunk a nationally televised last shot dagger into the hearts of his opponents. Nobody since Michael Jordan has been clutch like Kobe over a career except Reggie Miller. Kobe may be past his prime but he’s still one of the best. He’s done it all, and then, some.

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 11, 2013 at 10:41 PM

      I think you missed the games where he missed those shots. That’s what the percentage indicates. I counts all the misses and makes, and it never forgets.

  12. papichulo55 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    Of course he took shots where he was well defended. He played with key teammates who couldn’t hit their free throws. Rework your stats, incorporating that into your analysis. Thanks.

    • Kurt Helin - Oct 9, 2013 at 5:56 PM

      He played with teammates who can make plays at the end of games and didn’t pass to them, either.

  13. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:33 PM

    OK then but I bet his average in the clutch is better than 75% of the league. So what exactly are you trying to prove again?

    • mannyfresh209 - Oct 7, 2013 at 9:14 PM

      The league average is 33%. Kobe shoots it at 34%. Lol

  14. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:37 PM

    @sports fan…and Shaq can thank Kobe also. what u think he did it by himself?

    • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 9:02 PM

      2000 – Shaq led LA in Win Share = Finals win
      2001 – Shaq led LA in Win Share = Finals win
      2002 – Shaq led LA in Win Share = Finals win 
      2003 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = Semifinals loss
      2004 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = Finals loss 
      2005 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = Miss playoffs 
      2006 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = First round loss 
      2007 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = First round loss 
      2008 – Kobe led LA in Win Share = Finals loss

      2009 – Gasol led LA in Win Share = Finals win 
      2010 – Gasol led LA in Win Share = Finals win

      Kobe has Shaq and Gasol to thank, actually.

      • divan22 - Oct 7, 2013 at 9:20 PM

        Tremendous info, assuming it’s true. Very telling. Thanks.

      • redbaronx - Oct 13, 2013 at 2:26 PM

        @antistratfordian – Your ridiculous comments rear their ugly head again! You’re saying that Gasol was the major reason for Laker wins in 2009 and 2010 by quoting “Win Share” stats???

        You better keep Bill James saber-metrics and “Win Share” for judging baseball where it belongs. I don’t think anyone in their sane mind would say Gasol was the reason the Lakers won and would use “Win Share” to make their case.

        Another case of statistical stupidity!

      • antistratfordian - Oct 13, 2013 at 7:07 PM

        Everyone with a sane mind knows that Gasol is the reason the Lakers won. Without him they would not have even made it out of the first round.

        There was a reason why Phil Jackson said Gasol was the team’s MVP at one point during that run.

      • redbaronx - Oct 15, 2013 at 1:05 PM

        @antistratfordian – Do you hear that? It’s the sound of people laughing hysterically at your comments! The only reason Phil said that was to motivate Pau and get him to toughen up after the Boston series the year before. Of course they needed him to play, but saying Pau was the reason they won the title? That’s like saying the Lakers wouldn’t have won the title without AC Green in Magic’s days, or Michael Jordan wouldn’t have won without Horace Grant. There are key players on every champion team, but that doesn’t they’re equally valuable to the superstar of the team.

        To have any other perspective on that is delusional.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 16, 2013 at 7:27 PM

        Phil Jackson wasn’t the only one to call Pau the Lakers MVP… the LA Times did as well… the LA Times also said Pau should’ve won Finals MVP. Were they just trying to motivate him too? AFTER the NBA Finals? Toppest of keks.

        The vast majority of people, like yourself, are well meaning but not very intelligent. I’ve been doing this for far too long to worry about derision from the unsophisticated masses. They’ll learn soon enough.

        “All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.”

      • redbaronx - Oct 21, 2013 at 11:40 AM

        @antistratfordian – Anyone that knows Phil Jackson knows he makes “strategic” comments. Only a guy like you would take it literally to mean Pau was the reason the Lakers won….

      • antistratfordian - Oct 21, 2013 at 4:24 PM

        I don’t need Phil Jackson to tell me the reason why the Lakers won. I am more than capable enough to draw my own conclusions. Phil just happens to agree with me.

        What I think is terribly endearing and cute about Lakers fans is how any in-season Jackson criticism of Kobe is written off as him just him using Jedi mind tricks. BUT then he leaves the team and writes the same criticisms in a book. Oops.

        Well, Jackson is no longer a part of the Lakers and he’s still writing about how Gasol completely changed the team for the better… is he still trying to motivate Pau? No, he isn’t.

      • redbaronx - Oct 21, 2013 at 5:59 PM

        @antistratfordian – Enough. You obviously know diddly squat. I’ll let you keep thinking Pau is the reason the Lakers won…not going to argue. The comment is just too stupid to argue.

        Oh and by the way…I’m not a Lakers fan.

      • antistratfordian - Oct 21, 2013 at 6:06 PM

        You still think like one. :)

      • redbaronx - Oct 22, 2013 at 12:58 PM

        @antistratfordian – Very obvious you’ve never read my posts about the Lakers. Again, just because you think you know something, it doesn’t mean you do.

        From Loungefly “antistratfordian, AKA dramaqueen, is probably a huge Smush Parker fan…it still hurts him.”

        Get a clue. People can’t stand you, you don’t know BBall, and you need pscyhotherapy. Stick to Tick-Tack-Toe. I’m sure you can provide analysis for that game!

      • antistratfordian - Oct 22, 2013 at 9:42 PM

        Heh. This guy. Yeah, like I’ve never head that before. You think you’re the first to go down this path with me? That number runs in the thousands. I’ve been slapping chumps around for years. None of them ever take it well – like yourself – and I don’t expect them too. But my aegis is impenetrable. I’m adept at getting under the skin of others (you’re familiar with this), but one cannot get under mine.

        You and Mr. Loungefly can take a number and have a seat. Haters #1557 and #1558. :)

      • redbaronx - Oct 23, 2013 at 1:24 PM

        @antistratfordian – Like I said before, you need therapy. FAST!

  15. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:38 PM

    Jordan can thank pippen. lebron can thank Wade and bosh. what’s your point???

  16. freddysanford - Oct 7, 2013 at 8:58 PM

    Kobe is a great inspiration, and one of the main reasons I practice so hard and could beat most anyone , save for seasoned pros. Kobe showed me what hard work can yield. I love the guy and hope he proves all the hatorade gulpers wrong

    • antistratfordian - Oct 7, 2013 at 9:19 PM

      Kobe’s “hard work” = 44% shooting and teammates who hate him. 17 years in and Kobe still hasn’t figured out how to make most of his shots.

      You could learn much more from other, better, players who have a better attitude and sharper games.

      May I suggest a one LeBron James – he also has a legendary work ethic, except his work yields positive results i.e. he has improved his FG% for SEVEN STRAIGHT YEARS to the point where he’s making about 57% of his shots. He also went from being Kobe-level efficient when he was 20-21, to being Jordan-level efficient today – which is beyond impressive.

      That, my friend, truly shows you what hard work can yield.

  17. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    lol wtf is win share? and htf do u think that answers my question? anyone can bold print some garbage and post it. like I said before, no one has won a championship single handedly

    • stankcobra - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:30 PM

      “lol wtf is win share”… must be a Kobe fan to say something like that.

    • antistratfordian - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:04 AM

      Win Share is something that Michael Jordan, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Wilt Chamberlain and LeBron James have combined to lead the league in 31 times. (9 MJ, 9 KAJ, 8 WC, 5 LBJ)

      Win Share is something that Shaq, Malone, Duncan, Garnett and Dirk have combined to lead the league in 10 times. (2 apiece)

      Typically, the alpha dog on the team is going to lead it in Win Share because he’s the most productive player. Kobe has never led a championship team in Win Share, let alone the league. Pau Gasol led the Lakers the last two rings out.

      Make of that what you will.

      Rational people see that and think, “hey, Kobe might be overrated.” Kobe fans see that (and any other advanced stat) and think, “there has to be something wrong with this statistic if it doesn’t have Kobe up there with Jordan and LeBron.” Well, there isn’t something wrong with every single statistic – they were developed independently, yet they all end up saying the same thing. But there might be something wrong with Kobe Bryant and the intelligence level of his fans.

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:01 AM

      win shares are a calculation that represent how much you contributed individually to the team. Win Shares tends to dislike things like missed shots and turnovers, limiting Kobe’s effectiveness.

    • divan22 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:24 PM

      Just because you’re ignorant regarding win shares doesn’t mean they don’t exist and should be disregarded, Kobe Cultist.

  18. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:33 PM

    And bold print me a list of names of active players that made it to the finals 7 out of 12 years. Win share that…

    • borderline1988 - Oct 8, 2013 at 11:12 AM

      Just ask yourself this question. If Kobe was drafted by the Cleveland Cavaliers in 2003, instead of starting his career on the Lakers in 1996, how many titles (or even Finals appearances) would he have at this point?

      Context matters in NBA championship discussions. It simply cannot be a definitive concluding point regarding individual players. Doing so with Kobe means you are down-playing the value of Shaq. Or Phil Jackson – how poorly have the Lakers played when Jackson was not their coach?

      Kobe is a top-10 all-time player. His offense in one-on-one situations is perhaps the best ever. His overall talent (his being a threat from anywhere on the floor, ability to shoot in any situation, handles, driving skills, finishing, footwork, body control…he’s the total scoring package) is better than any other player I can think of in the history of the NBA.

      But he’s not that good of a passer, takes too many low-% shots, doesn’t play consistent defense, and is an average rebounder. Most of all, he doesn’t make other players on his team better.
      Those things detract from his greatness, which is why players like Magic Johnson, Lebron James, MJ, etc. are/were better than him. They are better all-around players and are more valuable than Kobe was.

  19. jgray30 - Oct 7, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Oh and sorry Kobe couldn’t make smush parker and kwame brown champs…..

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:02 AM

      according to the list he couldn’t make anyone champs…

  20. lhollis74 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:34 AM

    These stat nerds are the same who never played any sort of team sport so they have no clue about variables, like taking that last shot that NO ONE ELSE wants to take, or getting the ball with 3 seconds, sometimes less, from a player terrified to take a crucial shot in a important game! Or even being fearless enough to take a shot at the end of the half that’s low percentage, like well past the three point line, not being concerned about shooting percentage, like I see so many players decline because the concern about their personal stats outweigh the desire to take every opportunity to get an extra shot attempt.

    Stat nerds can read numbers, but very rarely understand the game as its played on the court.

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:11 AM

      statistically, those half court heaves before the half/quarter occur so infrequently that they would have an insignificant effect on FG%. They really don’t matter in the big picture (which I’m assuming is player evaluation here). Also, those shots at the end of the shot clock represent failed offense, which the shot taker has a hand in. These situations also occur far less often than people seem to think.

      Unfortunately, people believe in the eye test because they overestimate their ability to view the game in its entirety. Then, when they see something occur that they thought would happen, it serves as confirmation bias, reinforcing their belief in the created narrative and coloring or ignoring all instances in the future where the event does NOT occur. The eye test routinely misses things, ignores things, and forgets things, all the while convincing the person that it’s perfectly accurate as time goes on.

      For example, would you say Kobe is a good 3pt. shooter for his position?

    • divan22 - Oct 8, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      You have the audacity to call anyone a “nerd”, then come back with a pathetic list of excuses for your boy!?! HAHAHA.

      Tell you what… email your response to Dwight Howard! Maybe he’ll change his mind and demand a trade back to the Lakers!

  21. jgray30 - Oct 8, 2013 at 2:01 AM

    @lhollis….thanks, I didn’t think that many players even came close in the clutch. so ol boy’s stats don’t mean a damn thing. well at least he tried. and you are right about players being afraid of taking the shot. it took lebron a while to get that confidence. it might have even added a few more misses if he took the shot more often. Haters gone hate tho, I see he hasn’t responded yet

  22. redbaronx - Oct 8, 2013 at 2:13 AM

    @lhollis74 – I think the point that some of these guys are trying to make using stats, is that Kobe is overhyped. I’m not a big stat guy either, but I agree with them. Early in Kobe’s career he had one of the best centers of all time. With the recent two rings the league was terrifically weak in the years that he won. And you could make the case that even early in his career, the Lakers benefitted from playing the New Jersey Nets and Philadelphia. No one took them as serious contenders.

    So the “legend” that is Kobe is somewhat overblown. Kobe is one of the greatest in the game, but also rightly deserves the criticism of being too self serving at times in taking those last shots and trying to play “hero ball”. Everyone has their particular failing. Kobe’s greatest strength and weakness has always been his ability to play within the team. Even Phil has said that.

    Let’s face it. There aren’t too many guys named Magic or Bird that can be both superstar and master orchestrator. And there’s a good argument to be made for LeBron being in that category.

  23. jgray30 - Oct 8, 2013 at 2:53 AM

    Boston AND Orlando were both way better than new jersey nets…ijs

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:13 AM

      that Boston team was fantastic.

    • redbaronx - Oct 13, 2013 at 2:18 PM

      @jgray30 – I completely agree with what you said. I think the Lakers rings 4 and 5 were way more impressive than 1, 2, and 3 during Kobe’s time. You have to give Kobe a lot of credit for being the top gun in those seasons without another major superstar player on the Lakers roster.

  24. jgray30 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:30 AM

    oh Cuz he missed more shots and had more turnovers he didn’t contribute? never mind him leading in asst, pts, and occasionally rebounds…lol u r an idiot if u think that makes any sense.

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 11, 2013 at 10:43 PM

      When you total it all up, he did contribute quite well, just not as well as other players on the roster, namely Shaq early on and Gasol later.

  25. jgray30 - Oct 8, 2013 at 3:49 AM

    I think it would be pretty hard to win MVP and not contribute “AT THE SAME DAMN TIME!” buy I guess your win shares proved me wrong. No knock on Pau tho. I think he’s a great player maybe the best skilled big man in the game. He wasn’t getting out the first round without Kobe and vice versa. All I’m saying is, hell no he didn’t contribute more than Kobe. You shouldn’t even have to look that up. didn’t you watch those series? As a matter of fact, Gasol is still being called soft because of it. here’s a lesson for you tho. you can’t really compare a C and a SG anyway. the shots are different, Pau was always single covered, etc.

    • adamsjohn714 - Oct 8, 2013 at 6:19 AM

      well, i’m not sure with Win Shares, but some stats actually artificially inflate the value of certain positions so they don’t get overshadowed by Centers. Center is obviously the best position. They shoot well from the field, grab the most rebounds, block the most shots, turn it over the least, etc.

      I like the NO WAY response, though. Very ostrich-ian.

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