Kobe Bryant basically told Magic Johnson and Jerry West to pucker up for his buttocks.
Asked about critcism, specifically from Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant
brushed it off the shoulder under which the reporter was nagging him.
And he had some Kobe-esque words for critics.
The reporter asked: "Magic has said you guys needs to toughen up a
little more. Is there unfair criticism on this team at this part of the
To which Kobe responded: "Don't know, don't care. People that criticize, they
can go and kiss my [ass]. I don't give a [shit]. I really don't. I keep the
train moving. We're going to keep on moving, and in June, they'll say
nothing. But now, it's good talk."
The 8th leading scorer in NBA history is not a nice person -- and that's pretty uncontroversial. It's predictable that Kobe stand up for the potential of his team and good for him to not disappoint the expectations. I agree with Kurt Helin
that he's kinda' mad, but honestly doesn't "give a shit" in any
Kobe may be the only Laker who can tell one guy with a statue in front
of Staples Center and another who gets one in two weeks (Magic and [Jerry] West)
to kiss his, um, backside. I'd say Kobe is mad at them, but I'll take
him at his word that he really doesn't care.
The Lakers 34-15 with the second-best record in the
West. They're as deep as anyone and will only get better with a healthy
At the moment, they're tied with the Nuggets for the most efficient
offense in the NBA with a 112.6 ORtg, but floating at 11th with a
slightly above average 105.1 DRtg. Again, Bynum only makes the defense
better and Lamar Odom coming off the bench only makes them deeper.
Ron Artest is rumored by ESPN's Marc Stein to want a trade, but Artest told Sam Amick in a must-read candid interview, "L.A. is a perfect fit."
If you watch the video of Kobe with the reporters in its entirety, he discredits even such discussion as "gossip."
If you ask me, the Lakers are fine. The pieces were all in place last
year and they won. They added pieces that made them better and are still
as legit a title contender as anyone in The Association. And I go so
far to say that if you find a legitimate reason to believe a team can't
win the Finals, they're not elite because there are teams for which that
only reason is them playing each other.
With the Celtics and Spurs, the Lakers remain one of those teams. If you
disagree, scroll back to the top. Kobe has something to say to you.
Sure, Kobe's a Grade-A jerk. I hate him, too. But have to admit, he about as rockstar as it gets when people ask him questions.
Advanced Stats via Basketball-Reference.