Boston-loving sports columnist Bill Simmons’ had a lot to say about Kobe and the Lakers in his latest column. What do you guys think? Is Simmons’ starting to see the light?

simmonsBill on Kobe vs. Shaq:
In the book, I blamed Kobe Bryant for 2004’s breakup with Shaquille O’Neal and wrote that Shaq was a great guy. Last summer, Shaq left his fourth team on bad terms, and we heard rumors that he stole a reality-show idea from then-teammate Steve Nash. This happened right after Kobe won a non-Shaq title as the leader of the 2009 Lakers and even had a couple of successful interactions with teammates. Was Kobe less to blame than we thought? Why was Shaq on the wrong side of so many playoff sweeps and chemistry-gone-wrong situations? Could he have thrived in the Finals without a dominant sidekick like Kobe or Dwyane Wade?

Bill on Kobe:
A big theme of my book is The Secret of winning basketball, something Isiah Thomas explains to me at a topless pool in Las Vegas. (The Secret, in a nutshell: Teams only win titles when their best players forget about statistics, sublimate their own games for the greater good and put their egos on hold.) Another big theme of my book: Kobe Bryant’s inability to grasp The Secret. He wanted to win a title, but only on his terms. That’s what made him the most fascinating player of his generation. In the book, I even spend three pages comparing him to the wolf in Teen Wolf.

Fast-forward to a few weeks ago: A reporter asks Kobe if he still has room to grow as a player. Kobe responds, “I do, I do. I think there’s so much more to understand. A lot of it just has to do with winning. When you first come into the league, you’re trying to prove yourself as an individual, do things to assert yourself and establish yourself. But once you’ve done that, there’s another level to the game that’s more complex than figuring out how to put up big numbers as an individual.” (That’s right, The Secret! He finally gets it! Man, I wish this were in my book.)

Bill on the ’09-10 Lakers:
That reminds me, in the “Greatest Teams” chapter, I wrote that no modern team could crack the top-10 all-time because of the restrictions of today’s salary cap and luxury tax. I was wrong. The 2009-10 Lakers are going to be historically great. Nobody is going to touch them this season. I have already made room in the paperback for them. This is not a reverse jinx. As far as you know.

  • pauer

    So pretty much Simmons is saying everything he knew or thought, was wrong.

  • 007

    Simmons is just trying to jinx us.

    … and sell his book.

  • Trem

    He’s just trying to have a ready made excuse if we win the championship again

  • Matt from Dallas

    Simmons is one of the many Kobe haters who are trying to take back what they said now that Kobe is proving them all wrong, fuck Bill Simmons

  • Chris Manning

    Bill Simmons may be pro-Boston, but he gives credit where credit is due. Read his entry about Kobe Bryant in his new book and I dare you not to agree with what he says. The man REALLY knows hoop.

  • celtickilla

    simmons is trash……

  • chadb

    BS is crap (pun intended) He shouldn’t be given time on thelakersnation. That should be a fundamental rule! All in favor? say I?

  • Robert

    Bill? Simmons? the last person on earth who I would believe making this statement. I agree with above – he wants to sell books – to … whom? Lakers fans? That would be the last laugh (on us!).
    Although he does realize that Lakers and Celtics fans are among the most dedicated ‘basketball’ fans, so why not appeal to both.
    Or maybe … if he concedes “Historical Greatness”, then he would be ecstatic if his Celtics beat the Lakers – the Celtics (this year) are not historically great. They’re good – and have possibly a couple HOFs. Lakers have some ‘top 50s’ on their team, however. Hard to compete with that.
    Or maybe – he really is a true basketball fan, and has to acknowledge the obvious. This is indeed, an historical team. We have a top 5 player of all time (Kobe), and possibly the top Euro-player of all time (Pau) on the same team. We also have one of the top defenders of all time (Artest). Geez, the Lakers are stacked. Who wouldn’t say that they are one of the greatest teams assembled, ever.
    Bill? Simmons? This is “Historically Unusual”. BS is up to something. I wonder what it is???

  • KeyTurn

    Simmons is a great writer, but his style reminds me of a “shock jock”. He opens his mouth with some of the most ridiculous statements, then tries to back them up with some of the most absurd, one-sided, skewed logic ever.

    Anyway I give him a little credit for retreading his opinion of Kobe. All the writers and fans that are so opinionated about the working of Kobe’s thought process immediately lose credibility with me, Simmons gets A LITTLE BIT of cred back with me for this article.

  • Myself

    Bill Simmons is just trying to kiss every Laker fans behind, for the reason he wants us to go buy his book. I’m not falling for it, let the Celsucks fans go supports his ass!