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Quote of the Day: Jurgen Klinsmann uses Kobe contract to explain cutting Landon Donovan

Jun 6, 2014, 3:11 PM EDT

NBA basketball star Kobe Bryant takes a penalty kick as part of a promotion during halftime of the 2011 Herbalife World Football Challenge soccer match between Barcelona and Manchester United in Landover Reuters

“This always happens in America. Kobe Bryant, for example — why does he get a two-year contract extension for $50 million? Because of what he is going to do in the next two years for the Lakers? Of course not. Of course not. He gets it because of what he has done before. It makes no sense. Why do you pay for what has already happened?”

—United State’s Men’s National Soccer Coach Jurgen Klinsmann on why he cut Landon Donovan from the US World Cup squad.  Klinsmann was speaking to the New York Times (hat tip Lakers Nation).

Kobe would probably like to dispute this — he is sure he will return his dominant self. (And for the record, that’s a two-year, $48.5 million contract.)

Klinsmann’s point was simply that Donovan does not get to make the 2014 World Cup team based on past accomplishments, he had to earn it and there were others better now. Plenty within USA Soccer may wish to dispute that, but you have to like a coach with the stones to cut the best known American player because he doesn’t think he’s actually the best anymore. 

  1. aboogy123456 - Jun 6, 2014 at 3:22 PM

    Jerry Buss once said that Kobe brings in $80 million himself every year to the Lakers. Regardless of what you think of his basketball contributions, Kobe clearly brings value to the business, so the analogy is far off.

  2. aboogy123456 - Jun 6, 2014 at 3:24 PM

    Jerry Buss once said that Kobe brings in $80 million himself every year to the Lakers

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 6, 2014 at 4:42 PM

      and some scientists creating new pharm pills bring in hundreds of millions to billions in a single year for their companies and they aren’t getting paid what Kobe is…

      if they ONLY brought in $80 million, they’d be kicked out on their azzes…

      • bkbell3 - Jun 6, 2014 at 7:11 PM

        Number 1 the pay is collectivly bargined by the 2 parties and there are many chemists in the world but only a small amount of humans in sports, movies and music that can perform to a level that people will pay to see.Without these few humans that industry wouldn’t exist. That’s why they get paid what they do.

    • nflcrimerankingscom - Jun 6, 2014 at 4:53 PM

      Does he somehow magically bring in more cap space as well?

      • urodaddy07 - Jun 7, 2014 at 1:19 AM

        If they wanted to win they wouldn’t have paid him. They want to keep raking in the dough his popularity brings them

  3. asimonetti88 - Jun 6, 2014 at 3:27 PM

    Donovan should have made the team. Strange decision by Klinsmann. USA will not go far in the tournament without the most talented player in the country.

    • dollasnsense - Jun 6, 2014 at 5:35 PM

      The US won’t go far because they are grouped with Germany, Portugal, and Ghana and only two make it out of the group stage.

  4. bux1022 - Jun 6, 2014 at 3:35 PM

    Ya they will!

  5. ericreives - Jun 6, 2014 at 3:53 PM

    That’s a fairly inexperience roster overall for the USA, but I understand the decision. The Kobe analogy is doesn’t fit since there is money involved besides the salary that Kobe makes or will be making. Klinsmann would be better off comparing Jason Kidd’s appearance on USA Basketball team to Donovan’s appearance or lack there of, on USA Soccer.

  6. calkinsrob - Jun 6, 2014 at 4:02 PM

    Are things really much different in europe? I think the kobe extension was fine considering what it means to teh lakers and their fans to keep him happy.

    There are definitely some bad deals in American sports, but I’m ok with the fact that you need to overpay a little in order to keep/grab a player your team wants/needs. Do you all disagree? Im not a big soccer fan so I have no idea how contracts work in that sport but I would imagine there are a handful of players that get those respect contracts late in their career as well.

    Can anyone let me know if I am wrong? very curious to see if klinsmanns comments are really true.

    • eugenesaxe1 - Jun 6, 2014 at 4:28 PM

      In the sense that Kobe brings in a lot more than what he’s being paid, it’s a good deal. He sells seats, he sells merch, he brings in TV money. They could pay him double and still profit off him.
      No way in Hell is Kobe’s on-court production worth what he’s getting paid. And if he really cared about winning another title, he wouldn’t have signed that deal

      • worldbfree4me - Jun 6, 2014 at 5:25 PM

        The Busses are “Cash” Poor according to most. However they are “Asset Rich!” Look for them to either take an equity line out on the Team to increase their personal Cash flow or Sell outright in the not too distant future). If the Clippers brought in $2 Billion (Thanks Don), the Lakers should be at least worth $3 and with no current shortage of Billionaires wanting their very on real life video game, the time is right to cash in or out!

    • steves4 - Jun 6, 2014 at 5:18 PM

      In the Euro soccer world you don’t see many “respect” contracts. Too much is at stake in terms of financial well being and staying in the top flight leagues. Keep in mind that European soccer(and most of the rest of the world aside from the US) works with a promotion/relegation format where the bottom 2-3 teams in each league get dropped down a tier, and 2-3 teams from the lower tier get promoted to the top flight. This happens each season and there are millions of dollars a stake. Even the difference between finishing 4th and 5th in the Premier League is worth $50-$60 million dollars.

      If you finish in the bottom three in the NBA/NFL/NHL you just get rewarded with better draft picks.

      A pretty decent example would be Frank Lampard who up until now played for Chelsea. His contract was up and didn’t get renewed so he’ll play somewhere else for a few years. He can still play at a high level, going to the world cup and his manager at Chelsea called him one of the best players he’s managed and the best central midfielder of the past decade. They just don’t give out respect contracts when that money could go to someone that could contribute in a more meaningful way.

      There are exceptions to this, of course, but in general you have to completely change how you play and expect to play far less than you used to.

      • calkinsrob - Jun 8, 2014 at 5:30 PM

        Thanks this is a good point. cant tank in soccer so it changes alot.

    • raiderdan69 - Jun 6, 2014 at 6:03 PM

      Basically there is no cap in football. Teams purchase players from other teams for a fee rather than a trade (which is very rare) the player then signs a contract with the club for a length of time usually 3-6 years. But just like in american based sports there are lots of examples of large contract renewals that players do not deserve and have been given for 1 good year. But older players tend to only get shorter lower deals as rather than being tied to a player because of cap issues or lack of trade assets, clubs have the ability to in effect buy their way out of mistakes or buy new exciting talent from the smaller clubs. Best way to describe it is imagine if the nets could sell kevin garnett for a small fee but then purchase kevin love and instantly sign him to a new 5 year deal.

  7. antistratfordian - Jun 6, 2014 at 5:03 PM

    “Why do you pay for what has already happened?”

    That’s why the Lakers have been a bumbling mess in recent years. Their management has just been making one poor decision after another. Kobe’s contract is just a symptom of a larger problem that I’m not sure is fixable unless Jim Buss takes one long hard look in the mirror.

  8. musician0785 - Jun 6, 2014 at 5:51 PM

    bumbling mess?

    2010– championship
    2011– conference semis
    2012– conference semis
    2013– made playoffs despite half the roster missing significant time
    2014 lottery

    if that’s a bumbling mess than what is Detroit? or Cleveland? or Milwaukee….

    stick to facts troll

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 6, 2014 at 7:17 PM

      good points musician…

      I didn’t write what you commented to.

      But, the Lakers are now 18 games BELOW .500 for the past two seasons combined…

      While the Lakers WILL do better this coming season than they did this year, I do not see them being 18 games OVER .500, which is what it would take to get the Lakers back to .500 ball for what will then be three consecutive full seasons (12/13 – 13/14 – 14/15 seasons).

      So, for a franchise as proud as the Lakers, a three year stretch BELOW .500 isn’t/won’t be good…

      But no, they are much better off than Milwaukee, the Cavs etc…

      But when comparing them to themselves, they are not in peak for right now…

      I mean, you do realize that if the Lakers were to win 28 games this coming season, it would be an IMPROVEMENT from this past season right?

      • mazblast - Jun 6, 2014 at 7:59 PM

        Don’t confuse the issue by bringing up the facts, let alone anything involving math.

        You know you’ve won the argument when the other guy starts bringing up long-ago championships and won’t discuss current stinkage. Fans of the Yankees, Lakers, Patriots*, Cryboys in particular, but yes, even some fans of my Steelers will do this, and guess what, kids? IT DOESN’T MATTER, those years are well in the past.

      • musician0785 - Jun 7, 2014 at 12:37 AM

        Lakers miss the playoffs one year and you’re talkin about stinkage? Way to have some perspective….trolls like you expect the Lakers to win a ring every year, and when they don’t you pile on.

      • musician0785 - Jun 7, 2014 at 12:38 AM

        And since when do you put teams that didn’t make the playoffs (yankees, lakers, cowboys and steelers) with a team that went to AFC championship game like 3 years in a row?

      • musician0785 - Jun 7, 2014 at 12:42 AM

        ^^^^^ captain obvious everybody!!!

        of course it would be an improvement, they fielded a d-league team this year with all the injuries…..what is your point? Laker bashers hate when Laker fans bring up the past….and then go ahead and do exactly that themselves….tell me this….whats the lakers record the last 5 years…or hell 4 years?

      • 6thsense10 - Jun 7, 2014 at 2:18 AM

        This chain of comments started because a poster stated the Lakers had been a bumbling mess over the past few years. When a statement like that is made then it is necessary to review the team’s record over the past few years and upon further review the poster’s bumbling mess comment has no merit. I swear some fans have the attention span and memory of a two year old and that may be an insult to two year olds.

    • billtetley53 - Jun 7, 2014 at 8:24 AM

      What a surprise to find pissy eyes crying and calling someone a troll…

      2011- swept out by the Mavericks
      2012- lost 4-1 to the Thunder
      2013 – swept out by the Spurs

      Thats 1-12 ! They were not competitive in those series. They have shown a steady decline over the last 4 years.

      You lakers fans take a litvof greif because of how you operate on these boards. The arrogance and running of your mouthes comes with payback when times are bad for the team. The crap you get has all been bought and paid for, so reap the whirlwind.

      Just, for theclivevof God, quit crying and calling people trolls! You get “trolled” for reasons of your own doing.

      • musician0785 - Jun 7, 2014 at 10:18 AM

        1-12? what a moron. How could you possibly be 1-12 in the playoffs if the losses to okc and Dallas occurred in the 2ND ROUND? That would mean the team would have to win 4 games in the first round right? so where in the hell do you get 1-12 from?

        2011-won 4 games against New Orleans

        2012 won 4 games against Denver and one against okc

        so that means even with the sweep by Dallas, that’s a hell of a lot more 1-12 and a better recent playoff record than most teams, you can’t even add correctly hahahahaha.

      • billtetley53 - Jun 7, 2014 at 3:57 PM

        Pissy eyes, i see reading comprehension isnt your strong suit. You were bragging about how far the lakers made it in the playoffs, i was simply pointing out how uncompetitive they were in THE LAST SERIES THEY PLAYED IN EACH OF THOSE YEARS!!!!! Get it?!

        Im sure its hard for you to understand whst youre reading when youre constantly crying, those tears make it awfully hard to see.

      • musician0785 - Jun 8, 2014 at 12:39 AM

        only trolls pick and choose records they want to recognize just to support their argument, take the whole record or none at all? If you take the record of any team in the last playoff series the played only Miami would have a decent record….like i said before you can’t even add correctly….and the funny thing is you really have no point, you saw I posted something and felt you had to follow my lead…..very cute

  9. Scott Hevel - Jun 6, 2014 at 6:20 PM

    Best I can see is Klinsman is basically saying the Lakers should have stuck with Smush Parker or start Kent Bazemore.

    There are only 3 guys on the US roster that can create their own shot. Bradley, Dempsey and Donovan. When it’s 1-0 in the 80th minute, do you really feel okay with Bedoya or Diskerud? No, you don’t.

    The US better come away with 1 or 2 points in this tournament or JK will be on a short leash for sure

  10. navyeoddavee9 - Jun 6, 2014 at 6:41 PM

    If u have 2 earn it, how did Jozy, make the team, he couldn’t get off the bench at Sunderland, sometimes didn’t even make the bench, had a dreadful season, makes no sense

    • steves4 - Jun 7, 2014 at 2:11 AM

      If he was in MLS he’d have started, scored a boat load of goals(like he did in the eredivisie) and everyone would have been singing his praise. Instead he challenged himself in the physically toughest league in the world with one of the least talented teams in that division(which would still destroy most MLS teams) only to better prep himself for the world cup.

      BTW, since October Donovan has scored exactly 1 more goal than Jozy while playing in a far more inferior league.

  11. mungman69 - Jun 6, 2014 at 7:23 PM

    THE LAKERS ARE A BUMBLING MESS. So are lots of teams. The Lakers must bring in some proven talent to play with Kobe. They didnt sign Kobe to be part of a rebuilding story.
    They say trade that #7 pick with Nash’s contract to Philly for Thad Young and a couple of high second round picks. WHAT DO YOU THINK?

    • hryanana - Jun 6, 2014 at 8:20 PM

      Thad and a few 2nd rounders won’t be changing a rebuilding story.

  12. jadaruler - Jun 6, 2014 at 9:57 PM

    Jurgen is building the US team for the future. They might not win a game in this works cup, but they will be better in 18′ and 22′.

    The Kobe contract made zero sense. If he wanted to make on last run he would’ve taken less. He chose the money (I don’t blame him), but don’t complain when another mediocre Lakers’ season comes along.

    • urodaddy07 - Jun 7, 2014 at 1:24 AM

      That’s a stupid thing to say. World cups are 4 years apart. You never bring a young squad to get them experience. With tournaments that are that widely spaced you bring your best team. Too much can happen in that time to take risks on what could be. I am assuming Klinsman is bringing what he thinks is his best squad, not one he thinks will be the best in 4 years.

  13. mungman69 - Jun 7, 2014 at 1:58 AM

    Yes, I can’t see the Lakers doing anything positive now. They signed Kobe and have hit their bottom.

  14. isaiah007 - Jun 7, 2014 at 3:12 AM

    All you gotta do is say the word “Lakers” or “Kobe” in any story and people get all emotional. Just look at the comments when the Lakers are mentioned in any story compared to other teams. Smh!!

  15. mungman69 - Jun 7, 2014 at 5:00 AM

    If the commissioner didn’t block the Chris Paul trade the Lakers they would STILL be in the playoffs.

  16. addict2sport - Jun 7, 2014 at 9:42 AM

    The Lakers should have given Kobe a cap friendly contract then made a back room agreement to give him a percentage of ownership upon retirement to reward him instead of the legacy contract. I guarantee you Dr Jerry would’ve found a more creative way to handle things. Sure Kobe could’ve declined and offered to sign for lower money to “help” the team. But how many of us can honestly say we would do that? Honestly? Plus, Kobe is intelligent. He knows he needs to keep as much as he can in the bank for the next time he gets caught up and has to buy Vanessa new jewelry.

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