Kobe: Neither Mike D'Antoni nor Phil Jackson could have stopped him from playing heavy minutes during April.
It's no secret a large contingent of Laker fans lay the blame for Kobe Bryant's season ending Achilles injury at the feet of Mike D'Antoni, who played the guard 40+ minutes during a string of April games. Or, more specifically, for acquiescing to Bryant's demands to play 40+ minutes while the Lakers were making a playoff push. Thus, the guard literally laughed when asked if D'Antoni could have kept him off the floor.
"Of course it was (my idea)," scoffed Bryant. "Mike's really gonna tell me when to go in and out of the game?"
Plus, as Bryant noted, a legitimate superstar dictating his own PT is hardly uncharted waters.
"You guys really can't ride Mike too hard about this, because Magic used check himself into games, too," noted Kobe. "MJ used to check himself into games, too. I'm just following their examples. I used to do the same thing with Phil."
Yes. Yes, he did.
And with that endorsement, Laker fans will officially lay off D'Antoni. Done deal. Easy Peasy. (#Sarcasm)
Hopefully that stretch by Blake at the end of the year and Goudelock's play was enough to convince Kobe he won't have to play 40 going forward or force himself to(jf we re-sign Dwight). I will say though that if Webster is not signed, Goudelock is not re-signed and Meeks is still the backup 2 next year, then it's not going to change sadly.