HOOPSWORLD.COM: For once, Kobe Bryant wasn’t doing the talking.
Perhaps that’s why, for once, it was worth listening.
Having sat back and taken the best shots from Bryant and his media sycophants, Lakers owner Jerry Buss presented the other side of grumpy-guard-gate.
Basically, it came down to this: I’m still in charge.
Say what you want about the Lakers’ treatment of Shaquille O’Neal; say what you want about the team’s relative lack of personnel activity these past two seasons; and say what you want about the depths to which the franchise has fallen, but you have to say something about the way Buss has fired back.
When Bryant signed his seven-year, $136 million deal in 2004 he held the cards, issued the demands, had O’Neal clearing out his locker, and had the Clippers stocking their shelves in case he arrived.
So Buss paid the going rate.
But now? Now Buss holds the cards.