Phil couldn't control Kobe.
What would have happened with Phil, however, is we would not have been at that point, as far as 17-25.
But anyone blaming D'Antoni for what happened to Kobe, instead of Kobe, is biased
this isn't RG3, this isn't Derrick Rose.
Kobe is 17 years in the NBA. Not one coach, GM, or anybody can TELL him anything. They can make suggestions and so forth, but TELL him?
But, I will say D'Antoni was almos an observer, but in part that's due to no training camp.
Kobe is the one who made the playoff promise, and he wasn't going to allow D'Antoni to take him out the game
BUT, I BLAME KOBE for this.
Kobe was hurt TWICE in that game, and he didn't TRUST his teammates enough to come out the game.
I love Kobe, but if you deny that he was ASKED by D'Antoni to put himself in jeopardy in the game in which he got hurt, you're a lie
You've got to be joking. Phil's claim to fame as a great head coach is specifically his ability to manage his players, and that includes monster egos like Kobe, Jordan and Shaq. Great coaches command respect from their players, keep them under control if they act up, and get the most out of them. Both D'Antoni and Brown have been incapable of doing this, and it's the biggest reason why we've flamed out so badly over the last two seasons.
It's specifically because he's been in the league for 17 years that we need a coach capable of keeping him safe from himself. Everyone knows that Kobe will do whatever it takes to win. But if that involves him putting himself in harm's way (which is exactly what happened last season with him logging 40+ minutes over the last month of the season), then that's terrible for us. And yeah, legitimate coaches will tell their players off if it comes down to it. You can't be afraid of butting heads with your star player if it's for the good of the team. Keeping Kobe healthy enough to compete on a nightly basis, not pushing him to the point of exhaustion, is something that any decent coach would have done. They would have established roles on the team, managed minutes effectively, and had an actual system in place at some point during the season. The excuse of a lack of a training camp is complete bull, he had MONTHS to come up with a system, but we didn't see anything all year long.
Kobe was 2nd in the league at 38.6 minutes per game at the age of 34, with all the mileage on him. There was no one in the top 40 that even came close to playing as many minutes throughout their career. The next comparable player mileage-wise was Paul Pierce, who was 46th in the league at 33.4 minutes per game. You can't honestly tell me that there aren't an extra 5 minutes in a game that Kobe could have gotten rest, that it was imperative for him to push himself to the point of exhaustion just for us to win. You know what could have given him that extra few minutes of rest? An actual system with effective rotations and a gameplan. We didn't have that, we had to rely on Kobe bailing us out time and time again, and his body eventually gave out as a result of that.
Kobe being hurt twice, especially the 2nd time when he was very slow to get up, would have been the point at which any half decent coach would have taken him out of the game. If the coach is intimidated by his own player, scared to cause any sort of confrontation (which has been D'Antoni's thing his entire career), then he's no good for a team with a superstar player.
I don't even know how to interpret your last sentence. Deny that he was asked by D'Antoni to...what? What I believe happened is that D'Antoni just kept riding Kobe (like he did after the All-Star Break), till he gave out. Hey, Kobe's not tired and asking to come out, so it should be fine! It's the same thing he did with Nash and Amar'e in Phoenix and the same thing he did with Jeremy Lin through that Linsanity period.