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Lakers considered long shots, but Kobe Bryant to recruit Carmelo Anthony anyway

Jun 26, 2014, 8:46 AM EDT

The Lakers are not near the top of the list for Carmelo Anthony — if he’s leaving New York it is to chase a title and the Lakers are not near that level. Not even if Kobe Bryant returns from his surgeries close to his old self.

That doesn’t mean the Lakers aren’t going to make their pitch. “So you’re saying their’s a chance…”

That starts with Kobe — he has a long relationship with Anthony built over summers with Team USA. Bryant is going to reach out and try to recruit Anthony, the Lakers’ star told Chris Broussard of ESPN.

Though the Los Angeles Lakers are not on Anthony’s current list, Kobe Bryant plans to recruit him to the team. Bryant, who is close with Anthony, spoke to him by telephone when they were in separate parts of Europe earlier this week.

Bryant told ESPN.com in a text message that he plans to meet with Anthony, as well.

In the “pros” column, if Anthony comes to Los Angeles he can give his input on who the new coach should be and what system they should run. The Lakers have not settled on such trivial details yet.

This is not a battle Kobe and the Lakers are going to win. If Anthony leaves the Knicks and takes less money somewhere else  it is going to be all about winning, about chasing rings. And if that’s the case why come to the Western Conference? Why choose the hardest path possible?

But if he does come West, Dallas and Houston — two of the teams in his first round of interviews, along with Chicago — make sense. Those teams are close to competing with the Spurs, Thunder and Clippers. Plus, can you really see Kobe and Anthony blending well together on the court, willingly sharing the ball?

The Lakers are going to get their chance to make a run at a major free agent in the next couple years, one way or another. But not this guy, not this time. No matter how any times Kobe calls.

  1. hwatt - Jun 26, 2014 at 8:58 AM

    what’s w the fruitcake pic

    • azarkhan - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:45 AM

      Just a couple of multi-millionaires sharing a moment.

    • hwatt - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:40 PM

      at least it’s relegated to the cover pic and not in the article anymore

  2. therealdave123 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:08 AM

    Why would anyone at this stage in Kobe’s career want to play with him. Arrogant, over the hill, overpaid who will refuse to cede control to anyone. That will be their downfall, Kobe trying to play like he’s 28.

    • ranfan12 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:45 AM

      you speak as if kobe was playing terribly before he got injured

    • 5xchamp24 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:51 AM

      Obviously a hater. Yes KB is arrogant, who in the NBA isn’t. Yes he’s over the hill, but his hill his bigger than most so he has a longer way down to the bottom. He’s not overpaid, he just should have taken less money to make room for other top free agents. And although he can shoot his team out of a game because of shot selection, he’s smart enough to know his time is running out to get that sixth ring. So he will adjust.

      • azarkhan - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:54 AM

        “Yes KB is arrogant, who in the NBA isn’t.”

        Who isn’t? The San Antonio Spurs.

      • ranfan12 - Jun 27, 2014 at 12:03 AM

        well he was pretty much overpaid if the goal was to recruit players around him. lakers could’ve negotiated a better price but it was clear they wanted to reward him since they make a lot of money off him

  3. m4a188 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:45 AM

    Perfect, they will win many championships together…

  4. jimsjam33 - Jun 26, 2014 at 9:55 AM

    Pipedream

  5. protectthishouse54 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:25 AM

    Players: the new GM’s.

  6. nykfanwakemeupin2015 - Jun 26, 2014 at 10:40 AM

    Ufff that field goal % would be ugly

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:17 PM

      it would be awesome to watch… they’d set a Lakers franchise record for most MISSED field goals in a season…

      • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 3:27 PM

        well let’s see… no Shaq taking 2 foot shots and dunks to help it go WAY up…

        Even baby Dwight still shot a high percentage… Dunks at his size are high percentage.

        No Kareem taking high percentage shots…

        No Mikan taking high percentage shots from down low

        No Magic

        No Worthy

        No Pau

        yep, Melo and Kobe would brick their way to MORE missed shots than any other Laker team..

        I don’t think it would even be close actually…

  7. wiltchamberlainthethird - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:02 PM

    By no means am I a Lakers fan…but why can’t Melo to the Lakers work? He & Kobe would be your entire offense, surround em with the proper role players (& they got the cash to do it) plus pick up Marcus Smart tonite & that’s a solid foundation. The world is so sold on Houston now because Dwight turned down the Lakers…since when was it trendy to follow in the footsteps of DWIGHT HOWARD of all people? Say what you want about em but 16 out the last 34 Finals the Lakers have repped the West. If we’re gonna play the numbers game then by all means LA should be at the top of the list next to Chicago.

    • wiltchamberlainthethird - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:04 PM

      Oh & you know LaLa got a say in this move too….where else would his actress wife want to live? Just playing Devil’s Advocate here….

  8. sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:15 PM

    Just like Kobe told other teammates… “‘You can’t talk to me. You need more accolades under your belt before you come talk to me.’

    He wouldn’t even talk to Melo. He’d ask Melo what he’s ever won and then Kobe would go “shut up dude and don’t talk to me until you’ve won my 6th ring for me…”

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:20 PM

      Then La La, AFTER getting to know Vanessa would go up to Melo and say that he better win, as she doesn’t want to be married to someone who can’t win…

  9. antistratfordian - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:28 PM

    Couldn’t hurt.

  10. 2phatt2 - Jun 26, 2014 at 12:38 PM

    Dude…I remember Kobe’s pitch to keep Howard, we all saw how that turned out. I just can’t see how two ball hogs, volume shooters with low efficiency can share the ball.

    • Professor Fate - Jun 26, 2014 at 1:17 PM

      Bryant’s “pitch” was part of a meeting with Steve Nash and Howard.

      From ESPNLA-

      “Bryant and Nash told Howard that while other teams may seem better positioned to win in the immediate future, only the Lakers had players who actually had won multiple championships and knew what it took to win them.

      “Bryant told Howard he needed to ‘plant his roots in one place and grow.’ He said there always would be issues to deal with in whatever city he plays but that he would be better able to deal with them once he commits to one team and one city, sources described.

      “The discussion…did get into some of the other issues — such as Howard’s health — that had been the source of tension during the season, and the three men had what sources described as an ‘honest’ discussion about them.”

      Howard wasn’t going to stay in L.A. no matter what Bryant, Nash, Kupchak, Buss, or anyone else said. He never had any intention of remaining on the team and merely used that meeting to give the appearance the Lakers had a chance to retain him.

  11. Professor Fate - Jun 26, 2014 at 1:08 PM

    Bryant is just helping a friend get a big contract. It won’t be with the Lakers because, despite Bryant’s desire for another ring, Kupchak knows he needs to think of life afterwards.

    As a fan of the team I am not interested in Anthony. He is not a long-term solution and most likely won’t have much near-term success, even if Bryant stays healthy. Kupchak needs to rebuild through the draft and by making trades for needed pieces. Teams built like the Spurs succeed over many years, teams built like the Heat have a narrow window. I may be in the minority, but I prefer a team that can compete with the second unit on the floor.

  12. imakcds - Jun 26, 2014 at 2:36 PM

    when Kobe goes into his ‘ball hog’ mode, it’s because either his teammates are not performing, or he just plain has no confidence in their capabilities.
    Kobe KNOWS what Melo can do, and Kobe KNOWS his scoring capabilities would help the team win. If you don’t know that Kobe’s prime motivation is to win, then you just need to quit effen hating on Kobe.

    • sportsfan18 - Jun 26, 2014 at 5:00 PM

      imakcds

      That’ isn’t always true though…

      While Kobe BELIEVES that a bad shot by him is better than his teammates shooting… the numbers say otherwise…

      In the 2001 NBA Finals

      The Lakers shot .465% as a team and that was with Kobe’s .415% on MANY shots dragging their team shooting percentage down… 9 Lakers took field goal attempts in that series and Kobe’s was 7th out of the 9 in field goal percentage on the team.

      In the 2009 NBA Finals

      The Lakers shot .457% from the field. Kobe shot .430% while taking the most shots.

      Hey, I could list them all. I believe that in ONLY one of Kobe’s seven Finals has his shooting percentage helped the team’s average.

      He finishes like 6th, 7th or 8th on the team. In one of them he only bested one teammate in shooting percentage.

      Even in the regular season, like in his the 2012/13 season that many say was a good year for Kobe and it was. He shot .463% which is above his career average of .454%

      The Lakers shot .458% as a team in 12/13. So Kobe did help (his career average wouldn’t and there are many seasons where Kobe’s shooting percentage hurt the team.

      Put it this way, if you want the ball to go in the basket when it leaves a players hands, Kobe is middling at best on the Lakers at this. Even in that “good” 2012/13 season Kobe was 6th out of 14 in shooting percentage…

      So Kobe THINKS he can score, make the bucket better than his teammates and that is true of many of them but not all of them over the years. yet he jacks up shots that SHOULD have gone to others…

      In the 2009 Finals, Kobe took 135 field goal attempts to only 60 shots for Pau.

      Pau shot .600% on his shots to Kobes .430% on his 135 shots…

      Pay would have shot much higher than .430% had he taken 135 shots.

      What does this mean? Kobe HURT the team by clanking up misses. And others on the team clearly should have taken more shots.

      many, many instances of this through the years, reg season, playoffs, Finals where Kobe shot them out of games and into losses…

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