Is Kobe Bryant the Greatest Laker of All-Time?
Let the talk begin. Greatest Laker of all-time? One of the greatest players of all-time? Best player since Michael Jordan? All those questions will now be debated at bars and in the media now that Kobe Bryant has captured his fifth NBA Championship. You can say what you want about Kobe Bryant and you can talk all you want about the players that Kobe has played with throughout his career, but you can’t argue that he is the most skilled player in the NBA and his desire, his heart, and his will to win is unmatched by any other player currently in the NBA. Game seven was not one of his best games and almost became Kobe’s greatest nightmare, but despite his shot failing him for much of the night and despite him gripping the ball too tight, the Black Mamba found other ways to help his team win back-to-back NBA Titles. He had a tremendous series, was the best player on the court for either team, and showed why he is still the best player in the NBA. With the win, the Lakers captured their 16th NBA Championship and Kobe himself captured his fifth, which he will remind you is one more than Shaq.Kobe Bryant joined The Jim Rome Show to talk about why this title means so much to him, if it has any added meaning because it was against Boston, and whether or not he meant.
what he said after the game about Shaq:
On why this title means so much to him:
“It was the toughest. Boston is really, really a great team; an incredible defensive team and tough. I mean they’re nasty. It was a huge battle for us once we split the second game at home, then going up to Boston, dropping the last two, and then coming home down 3-2 that we really had to dig deep within ourselves and obviously being down 13 on our home court in game seven.”
On whether or not it meant more being that it was against Boston:
“I didn’t care who we were playing but being that we were playing the Celtics it means more. Does that make sense? Going into the Finals, I don’t care who it is. If it’s Orlando or Boston, it doesn’t matter. But now we were matched up with Boston and it was like we gotta beat these guys. We can’t lose to these guys again.”
On how tough it would’ve been to deal with losing to the Celtics twice in the NBA Finals:
“I woulda had no choice, but it woulda been a miserable, miserable time. It was just one of those games where you don’t want to lose that game. It was game seven, we had them on our own home floor, but it didn’t look good for awhile. We were awful. Pau (Gasol) and I were both horrendous in the first half, but somehow or another we managed to pull it out.”
On how tired he was:
“I was just physically tired and exhausted. It was one of those things where I wished we had two days off prior to game seven, but it just didn’t work out that way. I was tired, I was extremely tired.”
On his comments after the game about Shaq and whether or not he meant them seriously:
“100 percent. I meant it 100 percent. It’s a competitive thing. It’s always a competitive thing and he’s always made jokes about winning and me not being able to win and things like that. Whether it was in jest or not, I took it to heart. I had an opportunity to get one more than him and I’m happy my teammates pulled through for me and I was able to get that.”
On whether or not he expects Phil Jackson to be back:
“I don’t know. With Phil it’s not a matter of whether he wants to come back or not. I believe he wants to come back, but it’s a health thing. I truly believe that. Hopefully he’ll feel healthy enough to go through the rigors of another long regular season and come back next year. He’s truly, truly, truly special in terms of how he manages situations and manages the team. We just all love him so much.”
Listen to Kobe Bryant on the Jim Rome Show here