That Detroit team was more talented. that what it ALWAYS boils down too.
We didn't have horry(Spurs), or Fox(injured), Payton and Fisher were not better than Billups. Rip was enough of productivity to offset Kobe in some regards. Prince was better than any of our None Big 2. Ben Wallace is the greatest defensive center under 6'10 in the past 30+ years. rasheed Wallace is a better player historically than Lamar odom in his absolute prime.
Shaq was beyond his 200 season, which was his best by far, and it was 5 years later essentially. His numbers had less impact.
Even taking it to the 1st title.
Lakers were down by 15 to Portland in the 4th of the 7th game of the series, when kobe sparked a comeback
And in a pivotal game 4, when Shaq FOULED OUT, and Kobe was going against Reggie Miller for the TITLE, who won that battle?
Westbrook BEASTED in the Finals btw. His IMPACT was on point. He has mamba blood, I don't care what you say about his skill. And he went to my high school, where the REAL BALLERS GO( Shout out to Dorell Wright)
But Harden is a smooth player. A great talent and I guess if you put Westbrook's confidence and FIRE , with Harden's skilled footwork, you get a young Kobe.