Who are you, and what did you do with Kobe?
We all know Kobe as being the man with ice water in his veins, the player that wants to rip your heart out, and wants the ball down 1 with seconds to play.
Kobe wasn’t nervous when he was just 18 years old shooting potential game winners for the Lakers as a rookie. Even after air balling a few, he never got nervous or anxious, he just kept shooting.
When Shaq left town, most people would be nervous, it was now Kobe’s team and all praise and criticism would rest on his shoulders, yet nothing, cool as the other side of the pillow.
Kobe is always cool, calm, and collective. Nothing ever worries him; he lets nothing get in his head, and always is up for the challenge. Showing the world that I have been here before, and I have no problem taking the final shot, have no problem being the guy everybody will criticize if the team does bad, and have no problem being boo’ed in Game 1 of the season because I asked to be traded.
However, Tuesday at 2:30PM Pacific Time, Kobe was nervous.
For the first time as a diehard Kobe fan, I saw him anxious, edgy, and even frightened.
Kobe didn’t realize that people were going to ask him questions at a news conference; Stu Lantz had to reiterate that to him. Kobe accepted the MVP and then awkwardly walked away.
Come on Kobe this isn’t the academy awards, this is a press conference; all those reporters out there are there to ask you questions!
So, Stu told Kobe, “the reporters are going to ask you questions”, and then KB24 walked right passed the mic, asking, “Where do I stand?”
Then he finally was directed to the podium, with his hands on each side, tapping his fingers rapidly.
Then the words we have never heard came out, “I’ve never been here before, I’m nervous”
That may not be a shock to some Lakers fans, but it is to me. Kobe Bryant, nervous?
A man that always answers questions perfectly, with intelligence and etiquette, A man that is always all business. Actually had no idea how to act, the man that has ice water in his veins, didn’t know how to accept the MVP.
The reason, was because it was the one thing Kobe had no control over. No matter how hard he worked or how much he wanted it, there was no guarantee that he would ever win a MVP.
Although Kobe will not say it publicly, Kobe Bryant wants to be known as the best basketball player to ever play. Yet, there’s no way he could ever be considered for that title, if he never won an MVP.
MJ, Bird, Magic, Wilt, Kareem, Dr. J…Yup, all MVP’s at one point.
Well Kobe is now in that class, and when it’s all said and done, Kobe can now potentially be known as the greatest player that has ever played the game.