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Bill Simmons: Why I Don't Hate Kobe Bryant


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#1 BeeZee

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 11:44 AM

I am a Kobe Bryant hater. At least that's what Lakers fans tell me. When Mamba exploded for a house-record 61 points in Madison Square Garden recently, they probably thought I rooted against him. (Which I did, but only because I love Bernard King, the old record-holder.) I even received a few "Can't wait to see how you put this one down!" e-mails afterward. (Which I will.) But it got me thinking: For sports purposes, what does the word "hater" even mean?

In the case of Simmons v. Bryant, it can be interpreted in one of five ways:

1. I always see my Kobe glass as half empty. I enjoy disparaging his abilities, rooting against him and reveling in his failures. When he succeeds, I look for ways to discredit him. In short, Kobe cannot win with me. I am his antifan.

(Not true. I loved watching young Kobe; his 2000-01 season remains sublime for me. When he carried a dreadful Lakers squad into the '06 playoffs, I pushed for him to win MVP. One week before the 61-point game, I wrote on an ESPN.com chat that Kobe was my clear-cut No. 2 MVP choice, behind LeBron James, and marveled at the way he has refined his offensive game; with his knees slowly fading after almost 1,000 NBA games, he added a deadly fallaway and learned to pick his spots on drives. He still gets his 30 every night, just with less wear and tear. Shrewd. Believe me, I am not an antifan.)

2. Kobe has become such a polarizing player and person that if you aren't rooting for him, it means you're rooting against him. Look at me and The Mag: I'm a hater, but they give him print lap dances twice a year. Two extremes.

(I don't think this is true. If anything, it's dumb to assume that either extreme reveals a personal agenda.)


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#2 Superstar Basketball

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 12:44 PM

Really, it was the defining Kobe game. He elicited every reaction possible from lovers, haters and everyone in between. When LeBron arrived in New York two days later and notched his amazing 52/9/11, he didn't break Kobe's new record but definitely cheapened it. LeBron's 52 came in the flow of the offense. When the Knicks doubled him, he found the open man. When they singled him, he scored.


What a LeBron nutsack hugger. If you watched LeBron's game, he was clearly jacking up shots to get his stats. Funny how Simmons didn't put their shooting percentages up.
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#3 UKUGA

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 01:05 PM

Really, it was the defining Kobe game. He elicited every reaction possible from lovers, haters and everyone in between. When LeBron arrived in New York two days later and notched his amazing 52/9/11, he didn't break Kobe's new record but definitely cheapened it. LeBron's 52 came in the flow of the offense. When the Knicks doubled him, he found the open man. When they singled him, he scored.


What a LeBron nutsack hugger. If you watched LeBron's game, he was clearly jacking up shots to get his stats. Funny how Simmons didn't put their shooting percentages up.



Ummmmmmmm . . . bill?

How much did the Knicks double-team Kobe? A huge chunk of the reason that Kobe went off the way he did is because of the lack of defensive-pressure placed upon him by the Knicks. So, let's not criticize Kobe for doing what he does best (scoring), in light of the fact that Lebron passed out of double-teams that Kobe rarely ever saw. It is disingenuous.

By the way, does anyone else here happen to think that maybe the reason the Knicks double-teamed Lebron more, is because of the fact that Kobe just torched them for 61 in the same building two nights earlier?


I don't mind saying that Lebron had a better all-around performance. I have yet to ever receive any "Kobe Points" in my entire 13 years of Kobe-fandom for anything Bryant has done on the court.

But, to discredit Bryant's performance last Monday is not only asinine, but to use James' performance to do so also ignores the reality that James had the benefit of seeing Kobe scoring 61 points two nights earlier, and that he absolutely wanted to outdo him.

These were two different games, plain and simple. Just because Kobe plays a great game, and Lebron has a better one, does not make Kobe's performance any less impressive.

For all anyone knows, if the Cavs game had been on Monday and the Lakers game on Wednesday, Kobe may have gone for 75/5/5.

You just don't know plain, and simple.

And I repeat, Pau Gasol scored 30 points last Monday night! It's not as if nobody else had a big night for the Lakers.

Sadly, Simmons proves he is a Kobe hater during the very article in which he tries to prove that he is not a Kobe hater.

Edited by UKUGA, February 10, 2009 - 01:07 PM.

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#4 phifedogg76

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 01:51 PM

more Bill SImmons, oh well, let him write what he usually is known for
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#5 last stand 2.0

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 02:00 PM

Bill is not a kobe hater

he is a laker hater who hates kobe because he is a laker and will discredit both kobe and the lakers because they are tied with one another

he is from boston and admitted big celtics fan and admitted laker hater
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#6 Guest_Chicano_*

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 02:02 PM

Simmons proves he is a Kobe hater during the very article in which he tries to prove that he is not a Kobe hater.

Quoted For Truth. That wasn't convincing at all. He failed miserably, but I'd bet he'd rather have it that way anyway.

#7 LALDynasty

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 02:13 PM

the mans an idiot..I aint even gonna read
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#8 West Coast

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Posted February 10, 2009 - 04:21 PM

FAIL.

Still a Kobe hater.

Still an even bigger Laker hater.

Edited by Westcoast21, February 10, 2009 - 04:21 PM.


#9 TheAssassin611

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Posted February 11, 2009 - 02:50 AM

FAIL.

Still a Kobe hater.

Still an even bigger Laker hater.



#10 Notorious Arab

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Posted February 11, 2009 - 05:43 PM

Bill Simmons is the biggest biased sports reporter known to man. I mean at least try not to be so biased so ppl acuatlly listen to u! Fat [expletive]!

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