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#1807354 The Secret I Learned From Kobe By Buddy Hield

Posted by LALakersFan4Life on December 13, 2016 - 07:09 PM

BUDDY HIELD
GUARD / NEW ORLEANS PELICANS
 
I remember hearing this story about Kobe a few years ago.
 
The U.S. basketball team was in Vegas one summer, and on a day off Kobe rented a bicycle and went for a 40-mile bike ride. Through the desert. In July. All by himself.
 
If you heard that about almost anyone else, you’d say “Nah. That’s made up.”
 
But the crazy thing is: With Kobe, you’ve got to at least consider that it could be true.
 
I remember thinking, Yeah, why not? Not impossible.
 
There are a lot of legends about Kobe, about his crazy work ethic in practice and his intense drive to be the best.
 
I once heard that he would watch game film of the first half … at halftime of the same game.
 
Then there’s the story that whenever the Lakers signed a new player, Kobe would make him play him one-on-one in front of everyone. Just to show the new guy who was the boss.
 
I also heard that in high school Kobe used to make the bench guys on his team play him to 100.
 
I also heard — but, honestly I don’t know if it’s true — that during draft workouts, Kobe showed up to another guy’s session with the Lakers without asking. Jerry West was there, and he had never seen someone do that. I guess the rest is history.
 
There are only a few athletes in any sport who have achieved at such a high level that myths about them mix with the truth.
 
Kobe was a myth for me growing up. I’m from a neighborhood in the Bahamas called Eight Mile Rock, about as far away from L.A. as you can get. But as a kid I only wore number 8 or 24. I watched a lot of Lakers games on TV. Those were the Shaq-Kobe championship years.
 
On draft night, I got a text from Kobe.
 
Just like those other Kobe stories, my first reaction was, Wait, is this real? (I’ve also heard that Kobe is known to prank-call people for fun, but I don’t know if that’s true.)
 
Draft night came up fast — one minute it was the NCAA Tournament and the next thing I knew I was getting fitted for a suit and all that. Sitting in the green room I was seeing a lot of numbers on my phone that I didn’t recognize. So many people were calling and texting with advice and predictions about where I would go, or where I should go.
 
A few people were asking, Could the Lakers take me at No. 2?
 
So when Kobe texted, my first thought was, Does he have some … inside info?
 
I still have the text saved on my phone.
 
First he said, What’s up? and then said congratulations. But the last thing he wrote to me is what I still think about.
 
“It doesn’t matter where you go,” he wrote. “It matters more what you do when you get there. Just go there and work.”
 
No inside info. No tips. No recruiting me to the Lakers or anything like that. Soon after, the Pelicans picked me at No. 6.
 
About a month later, I got another text from Kobe. Actually, it wasn’t from Kobe, it was from a mutual friend of ours. I was out in L.A. working out. Did I want to work out with Mamba?
 
Of course I said yes. The friend told me that Kobe would meet me at the gym at 6 a.m. the next day.
 
I got nervous. Another story I’d heard about Kobe was that he has been known to arrive like 30 minutes early and if you’re not already there by then, he just bounces. That’s how serious he is about being early. So the night before I set like five alarms. I ended up getting up at 4 a.m. and just staying in bed, awake, till about 4:45. Then I drove to the gym to make sure I was there by 5:30.
 
When I got there, it was still dark out. No one was there yet. I had beat Kobe to the gym.
 
See … that’s the problem with myths. The story about him arriving early … I don’t even know if that story is true. I just believed it. Kobe was in my head already.
 
At 6 a.m. sharp, a black Range Rover pulled up. Kobe got out, shades on, and said, “What’s up?” We went straight to work.
 
I tried to observe everything about Kobe during the workout. I didn’t know if I’d have another chance like this again and I wanted to impress him. The dude is very serious when he works out. He doesn’t joke around in between drills or talk about nonbasketball stuff. It’s all basketball.
 
That wasn’t a big surprise, but a couple of things did amaze me. During our two-hour workout, we never left one half of the court.
 
That said a lot to me about how Kobe approaches the game. It’s not all over the place, it’s very methodical.
 
The way we did our shooting drills impressed me even more. It was different. After warming up, we didn’t do a normal shooting workouts — like taking 10 shots from one spot and 10 from another. Kobe was having me copy specific moves he was doing, and then repeating them over and over until I got bored of doing them. It wasn’t like one dribble to the elbow for a jumper, it was full sequences — moves that you might not even attempt once a game.
 
One move started in the high post. Kobe pump-faked at the free throw line and reverse-pivoted into the lane for a floater.
 
He made me do that one move maybe 100 times in a row while he watched.
 
“MSG!” I said. “I know this one.”
 
I did know it. It was this move:
 
 
“Oh, you’ve studied?” Kobe laughed.
 
“I’ve studied.”
 
It was nice to see him crack a smile.
 
“Well you still don’t have it down,” he said and pointed to my feet.
 
We did another 20 reps from the same spot.
 
I know people like to say that basketball is all about footwork, but if our workout was anything like what he did during his career, Kobe took it to a whole other level. Actually, if that’s how he worked out during his career, Kobe treated footwork kind of like a religion. I watched a lot of Kobe when I was growing up and even when he was in his prime there were other guys in the league who were way more athletic. But I think footwork was his cheat code.
 
At 8 a.m. Kobe said he had a breakfast meeting to get to. My arms were like noodles. I was drenched in sweat, we both were. It felt good. Two hours in the gym. A good day’s work.
 
On his way out, he turned to me and cracked another smile.
 
“You know, when I was younger I’d have come back in the afternoon and done the other half of the court.”
 
Damn, Kobe.
 
I’m lucky to be in New Orleans. Everyone in the city has been really cool to me. We’ve got Caribbean food here, which makes me happy, and a lot of people talk fast here with an accent, just like me. It’s laid back — my style. And it’s not a huge city, so I can walk around and actually talk with people.
 
People will say things like, “Buddy! You gon’ put on for the city?”
 
I can feel their excitement for our team. I’m a rookie. I’m still adjusting. If I have an off night, I don’t get down. I see it as a growth thing. I know it’s a long season.
 
Sometimes I think about what Kobe texted to me on draft night, about the work being more important than where you are.
 
New Orleans is the where part. I’ve got a coach, team and a city that has my back.
 
Now comes the work part. And that part … you can’t make that part up.
 

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#1786905 Kevin Durant joins Warriors on 2yr/$54.3m

Posted by Lord Flashheart on July 04, 2016 - 07:47 AM

west-jerry-warriors-ecu-smile.jpg


  • UKUGA, Game, Draztik and 6 others like this


#1642352 Other NBA games discussion thread

Posted by LakeShow805 on December 09, 2014 - 11:33 AM

 

Made me tear up. Respect to John Wall. Thats a real man.


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#1807552 Longtime NBA broadcaster Craig Sager dies at 65 after battle with cancer

Posted by artemis on December 15, 2016 - 12:49 PM

 

Craig Sager, the legendary sideline reporter and NBA announcer whose years-long battle with acute myeloid leukemia inspired countless fans and basketball lovers, died Thursday. He was 65.

 

“Craig Sager was a beloved member of the Turner family for more than three decades and he has been a true inspiration to us all,” Turner President David Levy wrote in a network statement. “There will never be another Craig Sager. His incredible talent, tireless work ethic and commitment to his craft took him all over the world covering sports.

 

Link

 

Love, peace, and prayers to him and his family. RIP to the fashion icon!


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#1789979 Tim Duncan Retires

Posted by Tensai on July 12, 2016 - 10:04 PM

maillots_1.jpg

 

 

 

 

Time flies.


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#1842728 Kyrie Irving Traded to Celtics for Crowder/Zizic/Thomas/Nets '18 pick

Posted by Tensai on July 21, 2017 - 11:32 PM

How is he overrated lol. No one mentions him as a Top 10 player in NBA or even Top 15?

 

I'd say he is even underrated. He doesn't get the attention Isaiah Thomas got in last year eventhough he had numerous offensive bursts in recent years. Between he and Curry there is little difference as far as the offensive ability goes. If he becomes his own man on another team, obviously he has a better chance to improve and make a case for himself as one of the best players in the league. Harden did, Westbrook did. Cousins, Davis did. (not saying Kyrie is in their league, talking about opportunity)


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#1837827 Looking for NBA and/or NCAA writers

Posted by Real Deal on July 05, 2017 - 04:11 PM

Well, I figured I'd stick this out there for any of you that are interested in writing about the NBA and/or NCAA.  It's not a paid position, but if we can build something out of it and your writing is good enough, it can be seen by some important eyes.  Alex Kennedy used to write for my staff a while back, and he pushed extremely hard to get where he is today...just takes motivation, and part of that is people reading what you write.

 

There are very few restrictions, and you won't be posting on a message board (that means I'm not losing you on here!).  You'll be posting using WordPress, and I'll be the "editor" until we can get another guy or two to help with that (way down the road).

 

http://www.discusshoops.com

 

Right now, I have one guy who I've recruited to write...not really pushing it too hard, but figured I'd find some that are interested from our community.

 

Finally, I know we are all about the Lakers, but I need those who are willing to cover more than just one team.

Let me know, and we'll get you set up!


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#1803286 LeBron says he lost respect for Phil Jackson

Posted by Game on November 16, 2016 - 07:04 PM

i'll be the first to tell you that this whole lebron thing is stupid, and we are all aware that there are people that will inappropriately pull the race card, but GAfan you sound like you're implying that racism basically doesn't exist anymore, and that everyone is out there making things up for some personal gain...if that's the case you are very mistaken

 

no one is taking anything away from veterans, not really related...based on this situation, yes it's dumb to call phil racist, and you could definitely argue that it's extreme to label donald trump a racist, but those of us who have experienced racism will tell you what's really disgusting...just because progress hasn't been made doesn't mean that things are ok everywhere...and i'm sorry, to imply that any of us would prefer to go back to a time where we were regularly murdered because of the color of our skin is so ridiculous it discounts anything your said really...that's offensive...easier?  

 

not going to bash you as a person, you're very much entitled to your opinion, but you're lacking information if you think everything is fine across the US...take it from real people that have actually experienced it, not just the idiots you see on tv.  

just because progress has been made doesn't mean that everything is a-ok


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#1789595 Tim Duncan Retires

Posted by Massacre on July 11, 2016 - 01:31 PM

Adrian Wojnarowski
Adrian Wojnarowski – Verified account ‏@WojVerticalNBA

Tim Duncan retires. No statement. No letter. Just a brief Spurs release: 1,072-438 (.710) record. Five championships. Goodbye No. 21.

Respect.
  • Persian Gulf, -Wade-, KarlCalaguas12 and 3 others like this


#1873100 Bruce Bowen rips Kawhi: "Are you kidding me?"

Posted by Massacre on June 23, 2018 - 03:27 PM

Players don’t owe teams anything.
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#1871576 2018 NBA Playoffs

Posted by Mobile Gundam on June 09, 2018 - 12:16 AM

Incredible game tonight; had me on the edge of my seat the whole time. 

 

Definitely worthy of being an NBA Hardwood Classic.


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#1860251 Milwaukee has fired coach Jason Kidd

Posted by Game on January 23, 2018 - 02:28 PM

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#1835584 Clippers trade CP3 to Rockets

Posted by androsays on June 28, 2017 - 07:55 AM

4.gif
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#1826947 2017 Playoff Games

Posted by fido on May 28, 2017 - 03:48 AM

You've ignored my points with no rebuttal, I can only assume you're in a bit of denial of the problems the NBA has currently.  That's fine.  This imbalance is in no way similar to the Lakers / Celtics eras, or the Bulls, Pistons, Rockets or otherwise.  This is a wide gap between the good and the bad - WIDE.

I'm not crying foul, my point was clear and concise.  The NBA has cowered to small markets due to their long time mis-management, allowed them a leg up, then froze the league there because it keeps the squeaky wheels greased.  Meanwhile, as I said, fans of big markets become lemmings, rooting out of habit, not hope.  If you think the NBA doesn't know this, you're fooling yourself.  That's not the NBA, that's a league trying to create balance (although they're far form it) through legislation, not letting teams manage themselves into success.  The East has a dynasty as well, you're forgetting that.

 

Enjoy the Finals, enjoy the most lop-sided league in the history of professional basketball.  You're being sold a bill of goods disguising itself as NBA basketball.  When every team has at least a spitting chance, leagues thrive.  Right now, there are two teams in the NBA for a while to come.  if that enthralls you, we're on different sides of the fence.  No amount of typing the same rhetoric back and forth will convince each other.  I'll await the return of actual competition in the NBA, you watch this imbalanced mess all you want.  It's boring.

I've said what I said, and I'm not going back and forth on where the league stands.  Right now, it's the worst playoffs in all of sports and the regular season has been completely rendered moot.   That's not good news.


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#1807558 Longtime NBA broadcaster Craig Sager dies at 65 after battle with cancer

Posted by UKUGA on December 15, 2016 - 02:22 PM

I got to meet Craig in Minneapolis before Game 5 of the 2004 NBA Western Conference Finals.

I was standing on a bridge over looking the Mississippi River and he jogged up the steps with 2 of his children.

He stopped and talked for a bit. Asked me why I liked the Lakers, etc.

He was friendly, and took a picture with me. We still have the framed photo in our house.

He really defined what it meant to be a sideline reporter. Really sorry to see him go.  


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#1787778 Kevin Durant joins Warriors on 2yr/$54.3m

Posted by bigfetz on July 05, 2016 - 05:39 PM

GEgX9Uo.gif


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#1787624 Kevin Durant joins Warriors on 2yr/$54.3m

Posted by kball on July 05, 2016 - 07:51 AM

These are my favorite posts from you. ^

Confusing from start to finish.

A rubiks cube of players and eras put in a stew and crapped out a sphincter


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#1787561 Kevin Durant joins Warriors on 2yr/$54.3m

Posted by JGuez on July 04, 2016 - 08:56 PM

I'm still shocked by this.

 

Sports, even more so at the professional level are about competition and trying to overcome obstacles. Allowing your mind to take your body to another level that feels impossible but accomplishing it anyway.

 

I never thought I'd say this but KD is a loser. Anything he wins on this team will never really hold as much weight versus had he chosen pretty much any other route.

 

Think about it. Say he wins 3 rings, people will always say "Yeah well he joined the 73 win GSW team (that he lost a 3-1 lead to mind you). There's no doubt in my mind that this is how he'll always be remembered.

 

I'm not even salty about it because the Lakers weren't winning soon and I assumed GSW was most likely to win next season anyways. So it's not as if I'm mad that the Warriors are going to win now.....I had pretty much accepted like most people that this was their window for a good amount of time.

 

I'm really just disappointed to see and athlete I looked up to and respected take the easy way out. He doesn't have a competitor mentality at all and I guess that's how I and the majority of people will always remember him.


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#1641175 Other NBA games discussion thread

Posted by Lakersfan1211 on December 05, 2014 - 05:52 PM

What a swat.


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#1633979 Other NBA games discussion thread

Posted by Majesty on November 17, 2014 - 10:52 PM

Also Pau still going to the Childrens Hospital of LA whenever he can, despite being a Bull. 
 

Former LA @Lakers star @PauGasol may have left LA, but he didn't forget about the kids of #CHLA.

B2q3MA0IUAAzM5B.jpg

 

Good to see.


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