As anointed by virtually every basketball aficionado on the planet, 5 time NBA Champion Kobe Bryant will go down as one of the Top 10 NBA players of all time. After scrutinizing his rather size-able resume, it’s not even up for discussion.
But after a disappointing season where he essentially got his coach (Mike Brown) fired and continually pushed, challenged, and threw new teammate Dwight Howard under the bus, I have just one question,….has Kobe become an un-coachable player?
Kobe was able to co-exist with fellow future Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal long enough to win 3 consecutive World Titles in the 2000′s and another 2 crowns alongside Pau Gasol, but those were under the tutelage of perhaps the greatest NBA coach in history, Phil Jackson.
Kobe and Dwight Howard claimed everything was good between the two All Star players but then Bryant actually refused to shoot during a few games just to prove a point to Howard that “The Mamba” was still the alpha dog on the roster.
And what about the prized acquisition of former 2 time NBA MVP Steve Nash from the Suns prior to the season that prompted many to project the Lakers as the Western Conference Champions before the season even began?
Once Nash was finally able to get on the court after rehabbing some injuries, Kobe decided the team functioned better with himself running the point, relegating Nash into an undersized shooting guard role. If Nash struggled to stay in front of opposing point guards, he definitely was a liability against bigger 2 guards.
All season long, it appeared as if Kobe was giving new coach Mike D’Antoni the benefit of the doubt after he clearly was still trying to run an uptempo offense with a roster of mostly 30 something veteran players. But he also seemed to sub himself in and out of games whenever he felt like it, undermining D’Antoni’s authority
I get it, many fans blame Kobe himself for many of the Lakers’ many problems this season, but remember that he almost single-handedly willed his squad into the postseason behind yet another banner year, further padding his resume on the road to the Naismith Hall of Fame.
But if the Lakers decide to keep the roster intact under Mike D ‘Antoni again next season, how can the players respect the coach after Kobe laughed at the thought of D’Antoni regulating his minutes(1:30 of the video)….
Kobe Disses Mike D’Antoni At Exit Interview:
Allen Moll has been a lifelong NBA and NCAA College Basketball fan who watches and studies games religiously, and coaches youth basketball in his native Lehigh Valley region of Pennsylvania. Allen has also provided content to Bleacherreport.com, Upperdeckblog.com, Cleveland.com, CSN Philly.com, Buckets Magazine, in addition to being a tenured NBA and NCAA columnist for TheHoopDoctors.com.