Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby The Rock on Thu Oct 11, 2012 4:42 pm

http://espn.go.com/los-angeles/nba/stor ... speak-mind

ONTARIO, Calif. -- Over the past couple of days Kobe Bryant has commented on or mentioned the following people: himself, Dwight Howard, Shaquille O'Neal, Michael Jordan, Magic Johnson, Andrew Bynum, Smush Parker, Phil Jackson, Kwame Brown, Lamar Odom, Chris Paul, and a litany of others.

He has spoken openly about his inevitable retirement in a few years. He has offered candid opinions on the legends he has played with, played against or stood alongside.

It has been like his own version of "A Christmas Carol," where the narrator goes on a journey of self-reflection as he's visited by the ghosts of Christmas' past, present and future.

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It's not hard to see why he has been in this contemplative place lately: At 34, with a torchbearer (Dwight Howard) to groom and then hand off to, he can see the end of his road in the NBA.

Yes, there are a lot of games to be played and titles to be won. There is a legacy to polish.

But more than at any point in the decade I've covered him, Bryant seems at peace. He has set his terms for how he'll pass the franchise to Howard. He has decided he's only going to do this as long as he can be one of the best players in the game.

There's a certain kind of freedom that comes with making decisions like this. You say what you want to say, not what you're supposed to say anymore.


There was another guy like that in these parts not too long ago. A coach by the name of Phil Jackson. And on more than one occasion recently, Bryant has reminded me and other longtime Los Angeles Lakers observers of the way Jackson became in his final years on the sideline.

Raw and somewhat bulletproof.

Take this from before Wednesday night's game as Bryant reflected on the lean seasons from 2005 to 2007: "I told Steve [Nash], 'You may have won an MVP, but I was playing with Smush Parker. He played with Barbosa and all those guys. I played with Smush and Kwame [Brown]. My goodness.

"Smush was the worst. He shouldn't have been in the NBA but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard so we let him walk on and had Tierre Brown back him up."

And there's more.

"Kwame, he's a great defensive player. He's one of the best defensive big men I've ever seen. But in terms of offense, he was challenged."


Reminded Kwame Brown was still in the league, Bryant laughed and said, "Somehow he talked Philly into giving him $7 million a year. Then they want to lock us out?"

In two minutes he'd managed to take shots at Lakers ownership, the new collective bargaining agreement and every other NBA owner. There might not be another player in the league who could speak truth to power with such blistering honesty. Outside of San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich or Denver Nuggets coach George Karl, I can't think of any other coach who'd let it rip like this.

But this is Bryant's status in the game now.

You already think what you think of him. There's no bending it anymore. And really, the days when changing minds was important to him are long behind him.

This is his time now, to spend as he wants. To do as much as he can. To say what he wants to say. To finish on his own terms.

"Normally it's not weird for a guy to talk about [retirement] when a guy's pretty much got it made up in his mind that these are going to be his last two years," teammate Antawn Jamison said. "It's just weird that you hear it from Kobe. This is guy who is invincible. He never shows weakness, never shows his card at all.

"You wouldn't expect him, of all people, to say that at all. But this is the new Kobe. It's kind of fun, actually."

The comparisons to Michael and Magic don't seem bother him anymore. Bring up Shaquille O'Neal any time you want. Just say the name Smush Parker and it's like he's swinging off a tee. After Wednesday's game he even offered an opinion on the Yankees' decision to pinch hit for Alex Rodriguez in the ninth inning of their win over the Baltimore Orioles. "I don't like that," he said with the serious face of a concerned friend. "That's not good for the chemistry of the team. I'm going to have to call him."


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There are people who will read Bryant's comments and find them cruel or mean-spirited. But read 'em again. The part about Brown being one of the best defensive big men he has ever seen. He meant every word.


"He was really quick. He understood defensive concepts," Bryant said of Brown. "He might have actually showed Andrew [Bynum] a few things, especially on screen-and-roll coverages and one-on-one defense."

He didn't have to say any of it, but he was in the mood to say all of it, the good and the bad. How he really feels. What he really thinks.

When people get to the end of a career like Bryant's, they go one of two ways. Some hang on too long, refusing to accept any reality but the one they've known. Others find a peace with knowing they have a say in how things end, even if it doesn't always feel that way.

What Kobe Bryant has been saying over the past few days is pretty simple: He only wants to be Kobe Bryant for as long as he can be Kobe Bryant.

"In all honestly, he can play the next five or six years," Jamison said. "But maybe not at the level he wants to compete at, and to play for a championship-caliber team."

How will it all end? That's three years down the road. But you can bet it'll go however Bryant says it will.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby dwighthowardsdad on Thu Oct 11, 2012 4:49 pm

Great article! He spoke the truth. During those year in 05-07, he was the best player in the game. No doubt. I really hope this team goes back to back. Let's let this men go out with a ring like he should. I'm going to miss him. It's going to be weird without him...
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby therealdeal on Thu Oct 11, 2012 4:55 pm

Nice read.

All I'm hoping is that Kobe doesn't lose that edge. With seeing the end of the tunnel, sometimes that can result in complacency. I know he wants that last ring or two, but does he NEED them?

I feel weird just thinking about Kobe maybe not having the same drive as he used to... Ugh...
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby trodgers on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:07 pm

I'm completely in agreement with him on his assessment of Kwame and Smush.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby intuitivelOve on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:08 pm

sorry but to me that interview revealed more about Kobe than it did Smush and Kwame.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby The Rock on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:08 pm

Former LA Lakers point guard Smush Parker is calling out Kobe Bryant for being a diva who treated his teammates like crap -- and it comes just hours after Kobe blamed Parker for costing him a huge trophy 7 years ago.

Parker played with Kobe during the 2005-06 season, and tells TMZ the Lakers great is only lashing out because he once dared to say Kobe was "overrated" as a teammate.

Parker's never explained what he meant by that, but now tells us ... Kobe "told me out of his own mouth that I couldn't talk to him. That my accolades under my belt weren't deserving enough for me to talk to him." He also says Kobe didn't talk to most of his teammates.

Parker says he's opening up about Kobe's diss because Kobe told reporters earlier today ... he lost the '05-'06 NBA MVP trophy to Steve Nash because he was surrounded with no-talent players that season.

Kobe said, "I tell Steve, you won MVP, but I was playing with Smush Parker."

Kobe piled on more, saying ... "He shouldn't have been in the NBA but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard. So we let him walk on."

Parker, who's currently hooping overseas, says his stats prove he was far from "the worst" ... as Kobe claims ... and adds, "People lie, numbers don't."


http://www.tmz.com/2012/10/11/kobe-bryant-los-angeles-lakers-smush-parker/#ixzz292SMqqxy
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby OX1947 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:15 pm

Kwame Brown was 10 times worse then Smush.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby intuitivelOve on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:17 pm

The Rock wrote:
Former LA Lakers point guard Smush Parker is calling out Kobe Bryant for being a diva who treated his teammates like crap -- and it comes just hours after Kobe blamed Parker for costing him a huge trophy 7 years ago.

Parker played with Kobe during the 2005-06 season, and tells TMZ the Lakers great is only lashing out because he once dared to say Kobe was "overrated" as a teammate.

Parker's never explained what he meant by that, but now tells us ... Kobe "told me out of his own mouth that I couldn't talk to him. That my accolades under my belt weren't deserving enough for me to talk to him." He also says Kobe didn't talk to most of his teammates.

Parker says he's opening up about Kobe's diss because Kobe told reporters earlier today ... he lost the '05-'06 NBA MVP trophy to Steve Nash because he was surrounded with no-talent players that season.

Kobe said, "I tell Steve, you won MVP, but I was playing with Smush Parker."

Kobe piled on more, saying ... "He shouldn't have been in the NBA but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard. So we let him walk on."

Parker, who's currently hooping overseas, says his stats prove he was far from "the worst" ... as Kobe claims ... and adds, "People lie, numbers don't."


http://www.tmz.com/2012/10/11/kobe-bryant-los-angeles-lakers-smush-parker/#ixzz292SMqqxy


Kobe might want to sit out the games against Philly. Kwame might try to hurt him.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Magic Skywalker on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:19 pm

therealdeal wrote:Nice read.

All I'm hoping is that Kobe doesn't lose that edge. With seeing the end of the tunnel, sometimes that can result in complacency. I know he wants that last ring or two, but does he NEED them?

I feel weird just thinking about Kobe maybe not having the same drive as he used to... Ugh...


Just think about what you're saying carefully. Now remember who we're talking about.


You know he is way too competitive. He knows he's being compared on a daily basis with MJ's 6 titles. He want to get there, he wants to surpass that mark.

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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby kray28 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:19 pm

LOL. Smush is butt hurt.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby 432J on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:23 pm

he's right on about kwame

while he was definitely a bad offensive player, his defense was actually a bright spot on those lakers teams. we tend to forget that however through the fact that he had no offensive game to him. i never hated on kwame due to the fact that he played good D
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Vasashi17 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:23 pm

Kobe is absolutely right in saying that he deserved the MVP with that group instead of Nash getting it with the group he had in Phoenix. If you take Kobe off that team, we don't even make the playoffs. Without Nash, Phoenix had at least some talent to at least make the postseason.

But to me, the MVP award is really tainted and I can care less about who wins it. The fact that Kobe only has 1 MVP in his illustrious career speaks volumes about the legitimacy of the MVP award.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby kray28 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:23 pm

OX1947 wrote:Kwame Brown was 10 times worse then Smush.


Nah, Kwame was a good teammate, and Kobe is right about his defense, he was our best defensive big for a long while. I think all of Staples booed Kwame mercilessly vs. Suns in 2008 (a few weeks before he was traded), Kobe publicly came to his defense. Kobe's telling it like it is. Kobe's talked about Kwame before...like the time Kwame told Kobe not to pass him the ball.

Smush was trash....he had talent, but no humility, and his fat ego thought he was on Kobe's level (or something). I remember on the night that Kobe scored 81, they asked him about it, and all he would talk about is what great "team defense they played" LOL. What a friggin loser.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby LAKEROC on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:45 pm

Smush was talented, that wasn't his problem. His problem was he had one of the most porous additudes of any player I have seen play for the Lakers.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby blakeruns on Thu Oct 11, 2012 5:48 pm

therealdeal wrote:Nice read.

All I'm hoping is that Kobe doesn't lose that edge. With seeing the end of the tunnel, sometimes that can result in complacency. I know he wants that last ring or two, but does he NEED them?

I feel weird just thinking about Kobe maybe not having the same drive as he used to... Ugh...



i took it completely the other way. Kobe's personality and opinons of him, his fan base are cemented at this point of his career. What isn't is the way he goes out as a basketball player. He can say or do nearly whatever he wants off the court at this point in his career. Those who call him a selfish, arrogant rapist aren't going to change their tune, minds have been made up on Kobe Bryant the person. However, he still has the opportunity to leave his mark on the game of basketball forever. I don't think his career accomplishments have exceeded his goals yet, and he is going to show the fans and haters alike what he can do about it.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby BDG on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:03 pm

Smush is my least favorite Laker of all time.

The guy single-handedly cost us so many games in his tenure. Worst attitude ever.

Kobe's just saying what everyone else already knew about Parker. And he's got a right to talk after Smush (somehow) thought he had the right to talk about Kobe a couple years back.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Lakerjones on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:08 pm

kray28 wrote:
OX1947 wrote:Kwame Brown was 10 times worse then Smush.


Nah, Kwame was a good teammate, and Kobe is right about his defense, he was our best defensive big for a long while. I think all of Staples booed Kwame mercilessly vs. Suns in 2008 (a few weeks before he was traded), Kobe publicly came to his defense. Kobe's telling it like it is. Kobe's talked about Kwame before...like the time Kwame told Kobe not to pass him the ball.

Smush was trash....he had talent, but no humility, and his fat ego thought he was on Kobe's level (or something). I remember on the night that Kobe scored 81, they asked him about it, and all he would talk about is what great "team defense they played" LOL. What a friggin loser.


^^ I remember that so well. Right then and there I knew Smush was a cancer. What a complete jerk he was in that interview. When he first started with us earlier that year I actually liked him and I agree he did have talent. But his attitude was the absolute worst and that nonsense after Kobe's 81 points was the end for me.

Smushcalade was 100 times worse than Kwame as far as I'm concerned.

I agree with Kobe all the way, Brown was an EXCELLENT low post defender. He was a strong dude and he anticipated guys' moves well. He didn't give up ground and his help D wasn't bad either.

But yeah, his offense was just horrifying. That's the only way you can describe it. Worst hands in all of basketball. No post up game at all. No shooting touch. He was horrific on that end.

I felt bad when he got booed, and it was cool of Kobe to step up for him. Flea did as well. I always had a bit of a soft spot for Kwame because of his horrible situation with his father abusing him, his mother and siblings. If you want to feel pretty good about your own upbringing no matter how dysfunctional, go back and read the story about Kwame's childhood and his father who is serving a sentence for murder. Scary and brutal. It's astonishing and says a lot about Kwame that he was able to survive it all and have himself a career in the NBA.

Smush on the other hand? Who cares? I'm with BDG - Parker is my least favorite Laker of all time.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby JoelMyersScrotalSack on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:32 pm

Parker's never explained what he meant by that, but now tells us ... Kobe "told me out of his own mouth that I couldn't talk to him. That my accolades under my belt weren't deserving enough for me to talk to him."


Obviously said it after they got into an argument or fight.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby lakerzkb8 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:55 pm

Honestly, I never respected people who felt entitled to talk *edited* just because they can.

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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Tragic on Thu Oct 11, 2012 6:57 pm

Reminded Kwame Brown was still in the league, Bryant laughed and said, "Somehow he talked Philly into giving him $7 million a year. Then they want to lock us out?"



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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby tigerjeterkobe on Thu Oct 11, 2012 7:00 pm

If Kobe is wrong, then why is Smush playing overseas? Why couldn't he get any time anywhere else in the league? Why is it that Cook, Walton, and other can't get any time anywhere else? They didn't belong in the leauge. We all know it. Sasha too -- where is he? though he has talent.
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby CaCHooKa Man on Thu Oct 11, 2012 7:15 pm

dont mess with the grim reaper
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Johnnyboy on Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:25 pm

Kobe had demons in him before. He seems happy now. If his career ended today It seems like he would be happy with what he's been able to do. A few years ago that was not the case. I think he's gonna get one more ring before he's done. Its all about health
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby Punk-101 on Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:30 pm

Taking the Suns to 7 games with that roster is one of the more underrated playoff performances of all time (both Kobe and Phil).
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Re: Kobe's revealing interview about Smush & Kwame

Postby intuitivelOve on Thu Oct 11, 2012 8:42 pm

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