Friday, February 01, 2008

Kobe Bryant: Ball Hog Personified

There is much marveling going on about Kobe Bryant. And I understand it. He is an incredible talent.
But truth is, the championship aspect of his career, now a fading memory, was made by Shaquille O’Neal. When Shaq went elsewhere - through no small doing of Bryant - the Lakers went South. They have a winning record now, but still don’t rate as a real championship contender. I doubt they will be as long as Bryant is the main focus of the team.
He is a ball hog. An ego come alive on the court. He is a spectacular player, true, but doesn’t make those around him better.
Thursday night at The Palace, Bryant was spectacular against the Pistons. Thursday night at The Palace, the Pistons won the game.
It was a game that summed up Kobe Bryant since Shaq departed for his championship in Miami.

Random Thoughts

- As long as they keep delivering the mail and don’t close the banks that Saturday, I have no issue with Bo Schembechler Day. The man was an icon in this state in every sense of the word.

- Illinois, despite its Rose Bowl appearance, and Michigan State, despite Mark Dantonio being an obvious upgrade at head coach, are still far behind Notre Dame, Michigan and Ohio State on the recruiting trail. And it will be reflected on football signing day next week.

- What I really hope happens this coming baseball season: Justin Verlander and Josh Beckett go head-to-head at least one time, preferably in Detroit - although April at Fenway Park wouldn’t be all bad, either.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


I understand where you are coming from, but the truth is, the only reason they were in that game was because of Kobe. They come in to town with a depleted roster due to injury, and still almost beat the Pistons.

1:41 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That matchup would be great. How about Dontrelle Willis vs. CC. Sabathia? Dave

1:56 PM 
Blogger Fred Brill said...

I am no basketball expert - but I am a real fan, and like Tiger with golf, I rate all roundballers against Michael Jordan. I know that's not hip in Detroit - but I do. And when Kobe came up - and Jordan was winding up - it was clear then that Kobe was no Jordan.

He didn't single-handedly dominate like Mike.

Kobe can't lift a team with limited talent any higher like Jordan could.

As a fan, I never saw an ounce of the arrogance in Jordan - competitive - yes, Hate to lose - yes. But arrogant - I guess only in that he was sure he could be thae same superstar in baseball too.

Jordan handled that failure with great dignity.

Kobe Bryant ain't no Michael Jordon.

I think he's thinks he's just like Mike.

As for Verlander vs. Beckett this year - great if it matches up - but every game with the Red Sox this year will be be an instant classic. I hope.

2:08 PM 
Blogger theMUHMEshow said...

I will start of by saying this... Pat, I think you are nuts when it comes to Kobe Bryant. You are so on-point when it comes to most of your topics... but you are off your rocker when it comes to Kobe Bryant...and I mean that with the utmost respect.

First, lets start with your statement that Kobe won his rings because of Shaq. Ill go back to 1982...since that was when I was born... When did someone win a title without a sidekick? Lakers... how many did Magic win without Kareem? Bird win without Parrish or McHale? Isiah without Joe? Jordan without Pippen or Phil Jackson? Ill give ya the 93-94 and 94-95 Rockets. Duncan has had a string of superstars from David Robinson to Manu and TP. Shaq and Kobe...the Piston team... with a starting lineup of borderline all-stars.. The Heat with Wade and Shaq...

I mean, you cannot say one person won a ring because of someone else... look throughout the history of the NBA... There are always 1-2 HOF or Superstars on the NBA championship team... So we can throw that point out the window..

As for Kobe being a ball hog and not making anyone better? I find that really had to digest. Kobe has led the Lakers in assists 3 of the last 4 years...and when you look at the roster, it is borderline laughable... The 04-05 season (first season w/o Shaq is the only season that you can look at Kobe and give any credence to anything you say.) Yet, you look at that team and you see Chucky Atkins was the starting point guard and their 3rd leading scorer? Chris Mihm and Jumaine Jones rounded out the rotation?! There isnt a player in the league that could make that squad with a pot to pee in...

Lakers finished 45-37 in 05-06 wiht this lineup... Smush Parker (3rd in scoring on the team), Brian Cook, Chris Mihm, Kwame Brown and Devean George getting most of the PT... yet he got that team in the playoffs... Not like he is playing with All Stars like Chauncey Billups, Steve Nash, Jason Kidd, or anyone else that seems to get your love.

You say he doesnt make players better? That is laughable... Smush Parker had career years next to Kobe, then couldnt even make the team in Miami? How about Brian Cook, Luke Walton, Mo Evans, Ronny Turiaf, Jordan Farmar and Sasha Vujacic all growing and improving their play and numbers next to Bryant?

It is easy to pound the chest of players like Chauncey Billups when he is playing along side of Rasheed Wallace, Rip Hamilton and a string of solid role players...

Kobe Bryant has the best "skill-set" the NBA has ever seen. He is one of the best penetrators ever, he is deadly and the best player in the league when the game is on the line. Add that to the fact he is the best on ball defender at the 2 guard spot in the league...

Kobe seems to be an easy target for people due to a few years of immaturity. I guess we cant forgive the kid for being one of the greatest players to live and make a few mistakes at such a young age.

He is one of the best players to ever touch a ball...and to say otherwise just smells of hate...

11:31 AM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

That was my point. He plays just spectacularly enough for his team to lose.

12:05 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Hadn't thought about that one. That would be quite the classic matchup of left-handers.

12:05 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

Fred Brill,
Point well-taken. Love him or hate him - and Jordan is hated around these parts for obvious reasons - everybody has to admit Jordan made those around him better. The same clearly can't be said about Kobe. He is a great talent more than a great player.

12:08 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

We'll see now that the Lakers have Gasol. No more excuses for Kobe and his fan club, of which you are obviously the president.

12:09 PM 
Blogger Pat Caputo said...

We'll see now that the Lakers have Gasol. No more excuses for Kobe and his fan club, of which you are obviously the president.

12:09 PM 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

You guys don't remember when Jordan got owned by the Pistons in the 80s with no talent. Jordan lifting his talentless team? Stop forgetting Jordan's selfish, ball-hogging, losing ways in the 1980s.

4:05 PM 
Blogger oba said...


I'm definitely not a member of the Kobe Bryant Fan Club.

Still, now that the Lakers have Gasol they've got the best record in the Western Conference and a 9-game winning streak.

Not too shabby for a ball hog.

1:33 PM 

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