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Let's appreciate the best times of Kobe Bryant


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#1 TheAssassin611

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 03:04 AM

I've always thought it odd how newspapers -- those warm and glowing gas lamps of journalism -- wait until someone dies or retires before writing what they label "An Appreciation."

It's like the parent who says nice things about a child only behind the kid's back. Or the colleagues who celebrate you only on the day you're leaving.



But we won't let that happen with Kobe Bryant, the Lakers' alpha peacock. He may be a genius, he may be an egomaniac -- probably both. In any case, the Lakers guard is probably one of the five best things to ever happen to L.A. sports fans (John Wooden, Vin Scully, Magic Johnson, the USC-UCLA rivalry being four other top contenders).

So let's salute Kobe while we can, while he's still in his prime, in the primest prime we've seen in years.

::

Five things you (probably) didn't know about the Lakers:

* In an hour, with the help of a rebounder, Kobe can take 500 practice shots -- a little more than eight shots a minute.

* The Lakers offense, as are all offenses, is based on penetration -- on how they get the ball to the basket.

* Jeanie Buss did not want to hire Phil Jackson, who would eventually become her boyfriend. She thought that Jackson was too big a personality for a team that already had Kobe and Shaquille O'Neal. Her father, of course, overruled her.

* The triangle may be the most arcane offense in sports. Derek Fisher confesses that the Lakers ran it better in Jackson's early years. "We were better students then," he says.

* Kobe's middle name is Bean.

::

When you think about it, it's amazing we've kept Kobe here so long. Quick, name one other superstar -- OK, Derek Jeter -- but one other superstar -- OK, Chipper Jones -- but just one more guy who has stayed with one ballclub his entire career. Besides Tim Duncan, name me one.

Thing is, longevity like this is increasingly rare. So long, David Beckham, and that wife of yours, who had begun to resemble a palm tree anyway. Take all your hype and your phony promises and skitter off, like superstars almost always do.

But Kobe's still here, and will be for life. He has managed to be the biggest celeb in a town dripping with the blingy idiots. He met his wife here, had his kids here, put 250,000 miles on those bony knees.

After 13 seasons, he remains quicker than electricity. Watch his body language on the court. He seems, to me anyway, almost canine in his motions, sniffing the air for rabbits.

At 30, he's still got hops and a kill shot that has surpassed Jason Bourne's. This season, even more than most, the basket seems to get bigger for him in the final three minutes of a game.

How about that junket back east. Sixty-one in New York? The entire Knicks team can't score 61 in New York. It was the best road trip since General Sherman. The guy got 19 while playing with flu in icy Cleveland. That's just sick.

Why do they hate us so in other lands? Probably 100 good reasons, but one of them is that we have Kobe and they don't -- a player who makes a difficult game look easy, a player who makes impossible shots look like pie.



LINK!

#2 Machinehead

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 03:10 AM

That was amazing. Wow.
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#3 kobynum

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 06:16 PM

damn it makes me realize that he is one in a million. we are truly lucky to witness his brilliance
Again - this team, as currently constructed won't make it out of the second round of the playoffs, let alone the West or win the Finals.---fido on 2011 Lakers

#4 ファイナルファンタジ

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 06:21 PM

Haha awesome. I do agree they ran the triangle better back then than they do now. But still, excellent.

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#5 kobynum

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 06:31 PM

Haha awesome. I do agree they ran the triangle better back then than they do now. But still, excellent.

ron harper and horace grant had something to do with that.
Again - this team, as currently constructed won't make it out of the second round of the playoffs, let alone the West or win the Finals.---fido on 2011 Lakers

#6 Base

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 08:18 PM

When you think about it, it's amazing we've kept Kobe here so long. Quick, name one other superstar -- OK, Derek Jeter -- but one other superstar -- OK, Chipper Jones -- but just one more guy who has stayed with one ballclub his entire career. Besides Tim Duncan, name me one.


Cal Ripken Jr. is a superstar, and he played with the Baltimore Orioles from August 1981- October 2001. (Hey. he was naming Baseball players, so Ripken counts) 20 years with one team...Amazing. Kobe got a ways to go.

So long, David Beckham, and that wife of yours, who had begun to resemble a palm tree anyway. Take all your hype and your phony promises and skitter off, like superstars almost always do.


Beckham is 33, and Kobe is 30. Plus, Bekham has been playing pro soccer since 1991 (if I am not mistaken). He came to America since the Competition sucks here. He didn't come here to rule the field, plus LA Galaxy would still suck even if Beckham was in his prime. They might win 1-2 more games a season, nothing more.
If Kobe had 11 other Smush Parkers on the Lakers every game, I don't think that the Lakers would even win half of the games. The LA Galaxy players make the La Liga players look like gods.

Edited by Base, February 12, 2009 - 08:34 PM.


#7 A_V_R

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 09:05 PM

Beatific writing, being a writer myself I really appreciate the word play and transgression of the article.

Nice work.


#8 Notorious Arab

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 11:06 PM

Beautiful :cry: :cry:

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#9 ILLWiLL20

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Posted February 12, 2009 - 11:58 PM

damn it makes me realize that he is one in a million. we are truly lucky to witness his brilliance


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#10 LALDynasty

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Posted February 13, 2009 - 12:45 AM

amazing Article..
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#11 lakerfool

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Posted February 13, 2009 - 08:09 AM

Best memory was him throwing an Alley to Shaq in the 2000 WCF, to help get us to the finales and win the 1st championship of the 3peat era. That was Kobe at his best.
Gooden>> Lamar Odom. Mo Williams>> Ray Allen>> Gasol. Nene= Gasol.

#12 Game

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Posted February 13, 2009 - 10:35 AM

Best memory was him throwing an Alley to Shaq in the 2000 WCF, to help get us to the finales and win the 1st championship of the 3peat era. That was Kobe at his best.

its rare when you and i agree on something, but of all the things i've seen in basketball, if this isn't my #1, its damn close. this was the first time i had seen my team win a championship...everyone one after that is great, but not the same.

i was 6 the last time they won a championship...you don't appreciate anything when you're 6, haha. when this happened, all i knew was defeat at the hands of the spurs and the jazz for years. then, when phil came, my senior year of high school...i felt it had to be the year. then to be down so much in that game, and feel it slipping away in a game 7...then to see the look on shaq's face after that dunk went down, and we go on to win, nothin like it!

i actually still have the newspaper clipping from that...at least i think this is it

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#13 udechukwu

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Posted February 14, 2009 - 12:00 PM

glad you put this up, i feel he is the greatest thing to happen to LA sports and ive been appreciating that for a long time. When I grow up I'll be able to tell stories of kobe bryant like Chicago natives get to talk about michael jordan, by then he will be known as the greatest


Where will amazing happen this year ?..... LA!!!
2009 NBA Champions
A Prophecy fulfilled.

#14 Makaveli

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Posted February 14, 2009 - 01:02 PM

Great read.. all i can say.

#15 Junayd

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Posted February 14, 2009 - 01:45 PM

Kobe is God

^_^

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#16 lakerfool

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Posted February 14, 2009 - 03:19 PM

its rare when you and i agree on something, but of all the things i've seen in basketball, if this isn't my #1, its damn close. this was the first time i had seen my team win a championship...everyone one after that is great, but not the same.

i was 6 the last time they won a championship...you don't appreciate anything when you're 6, haha. when this happened, all i knew was defeat at the hands of the spurs and the jazz for years. then, when phil came, my senior year of high school...i felt it had to be the year. then to be down so much in that game, and feel it slipping away in a game 7...then to see the look on shaq's face after that dunk went down, and we go on to win, nothin like it!

i actually still have the newspaper clipping from that...at least i think this is it

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http://www.youtube.c...h?v=H_ikaIDz-Ck

I remember us being down by a dozen or so and thinking 'dammit, not again'. We go on this run, capped by the alley oop. Damn.
Gooden>> Lamar Odom. Mo Williams>> Ray Allen>> Gasol. Nene= Gasol.

#17 kobynum

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Posted February 14, 2009 - 03:32 PM

my greatest Kobe moment ws when Shaq fouled out against Indiana, THE OVERTIME GAME, and Kobe took over and had a calm demeanor. He had crazy energy, nd was getting tip-ins.
Again - this team, as currently constructed won't make it out of the second round of the playoffs, let alone the West or win the Finals.---fido on 2011 Lakers

#18 infinite_

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Posted February 15, 2009 - 07:10 AM

Kobe is so special. This is the game that convinced me he would be GREAT -- better than great, actually. Michael Jordan was in the crowd and Kobe just completely took over. The come back... then down by three, almost no time left, Glen Rice at the free throw line, makes one and misses the second on purpose and Kobe tips it in to send it to OT where LA gets the W. For some reason, that moment has stuck with me all these years. His will to win is unbelievable. He's given me so many amazing Laker memories that still take my breath away and give me goose bumps. I feel so privileged to get to see him play and root for him. I'm so glad he's a Laker. It won't be the same when he eventually hangs 'em up.




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