Aug 23, 2014, 2:45 PM EDT
Kobe Bryant is right.
But it’s also an argument that’s hard to win.
I’ve heard estimates from people around the Lakers that Kobe likely generates $70 million for the team when you consider the seats and suites he fills, with the sponsors that come to the Lakers because they want to be associated with him and the team he plays for. Yet he takes a lot of grief for the two-year $48.5 million contract extension he signed.
Kobe doesn’t think that salary cap system limiting max contracts is fair. He told that to Sports Illustrated’s Chris Ballard (who did the big cover story profile of Kobe for SI).
He also doesn’t think it’s fair players are pressured to take less so the team can win.
• Kobe’s right, but you can’t win the argument, at least not with most fans. The problem is we can’t relate to the money involved — Kobe has made nearly $280 million over his career in salary alone, and that’s before this deal (and not counting endorsements, shoe deals, etc). You can be intellectually right that he doesn’t make even half of what he brings in to the organization, but you run into the “how much does a policeman make?” argument. Kobe plays a game — very well over his career, but it’s a game. Entertainers are overpaid in general in our society, maybe not in comparison to what they bring in, but it’s hard to feel sympathy for NBA players complaining about the size of their paychecks.
• Kobe’s contract still hamstrings the Lakers the next couple years. Lakers defenders don’t want to admit it, but it does. The Lakers struggle to attract top free agents like Carmelo Anthony because even if they sign him to a max deal they would have little other ability to upgrade the roster. Is it fair to Dirk Nowitzki and Tim Duncan they had to take late career paycuts to help their team attract talent? No. But they did and those teams are much the better for it.
Jun 3, 2015, 8:00 AM EDT
Shumpert’s going to be pretty close to the fault line a lot the next couple weeks.
Jun 3, 2015, 12:01 AM EDT
Not a great situation for anyone involved
Jun 2, 2015, 11:10 PM EDT
Williams will help Billy Donovan transition to NBA
Jun 2, 2015, 10:11 PM EDT
Jun 2, 2015, 9:11 PM EDT
Hoiberg spoke at length about the importance of pacing and rest at his introductory press conference.
Jun 2, 2015, 8:15 PM EDT
How will Golden State use Speights and Festus Ezeli?
Jun 2, 2015, 7:15 PM EDT
Miami is using its leverage but playing a dangerous game
Jun 2, 2015, 6:15 PM EDT
I think Love stays in Cleveland. Wade on the other hand…
Jun 2, 2015, 5:39 PM EDT
This was expected but now is official.
Jun 2, 2015, 5:15 PM EDT
I think Gentry.
Jun 2, 2015, 4:30 PM EDT
Stephen Curry is a slight favorite to win Finals MVP over LeBron James.
Jun 2, 2015, 3:45 PM EDT
“Truly, from the eye test, he’s the greatest there’s ever been.” —Steve Nash on Stephen Curry
Jun 2, 2015, 3:00 PM EDT
Pierce can opt out of the final year of his Wizards contract to become an unrestricted free agent.
Jun 2, 2015, 2:15 PM EDT
Jun 2, 2015, 1:30 PM EDT
Both Stephen Curry and Klay Thompson were cleared to return recently under questionable circumstances.
Jun 2, 2015, 12:40 PM EDT
Cleveland has plenty of options, few – maybe none – good
Jun 2, 2015, 12:00 PM EDT
Evan Fournier makes the list, but LeBron James does not.
Jun 2, 2015, 11:20 AM EDT
Mudiay would like to slide into the top five.
Jun 2, 2015, 10:40 AM EDT
Harrison Barnes, Andre Iguodala and Draymond Green will all see time on James, but will it be enough?
Reporter unsuccessful at baiting LeBron James into discussing possibility of Dwyane Wade leaving Heat in free agency
Jun 2, 2015, 10:00 AM EDT
This is why players are guarded with the media, and often times speak in clichés.
- PBT Extra: Will Kevin Love, Dwyane Wade be moving on? 19
- Warriors’ Klay Thompson cleared to play in Game 1 9
- PBT Extra: Who is better positioned as a new coach, Hoiberg or Gentry? 19
- LeBron James leads the league in isolation shots during the playoffs. How’s that going? 23
- How do the Cavaliers defend Stephen Curry? 16
- Warriors have options to guard LeBron James, but he’ll make them work 32
- What kind of coach is Chicago getting with Fred Hoiberg? 16
- PBT Extra: Finals preview, how good are new and improved Cavaliers? 9