Monday, May 12, 2008

Kobe: Faker or Ballhog?

Sorry, Lakers fans. Sorry, Kobe lovers. Tonight you get just one choice when it comes to your MVP: was Kobe Bryant a big faker or just a ballhog during Sunday's game at Utah.

I ask this question because of some pretty simple facts:

1. Bryant apparently suffered through a back injury all game. (I say "apparently" because I'm never quite sure with this guy. He has a history of milking injuries for dramatic effect and is the king of playing 100% while trying to score and then limping off the court during timeouts. Plus, his dramatic halftime report to Pam Oliver detailed his back injury, but Utah's Deron Williams thought it was an "ankle tweak." Anytime the other team doesn't even know what the injury is leads me to believe it might not be as life-threatening as Mike Tirico makes it out to be.)

2. Bryant shot 33 times.

Okay, if you are so injured that you have to grimace and wince and limp around and lay on the floor all game, then why on earth are you shooting 33 times? More to the point, why are you shooting 33 times when you are only making 13 of them and you have Pau Gasol (11-for-16) on your team?

Look, you can't have it both ways. You can't try (for the umpteenth time) to replicate Jordan's Flu Game and then shoot your team out of the contest. And if you are healthy enough to jack up 33 FGA's, then you shouldn't be milking an injury like it's career threatening.

I was always told that if you are injured, than you don't play. If you are merely hurt, then you suck it up and stop making a big scene.

In this case, if Kobe was as hurt as he made himself out to be today, then he should have got out of the way. The Lakers were playing great basketball when they were running and cutting and moving. When Gasol was operating inside. When Odom was isolating Boozer at the top of the key. When Fisher was draining deep threes. But there was Limpy McGee, jacking up wild shots from all over the court, trying to take his man one-on-one, milking every moment with that creepy "are they zooming right now?" awareness he's always had regarding the broadcasting of his profession.

So which was it, Kobe? Were you exaggerating your injury for maximum media effect? Or were you so arrogant and selfish that you put your team's chances in jeopardy? I don't see any other option on this one.


Adam Hoff said...

I'm a Kobe Hater.

Just wanted to get out in front of that one.

John said...

My name is John, I am a kobe hater, I was thinking the same thing all game! He rarely loooked hurt after a made bucket...

Anonymous said...

Jason here...

It's clear to me Kobe is a ball hog, I think he's upset that Gasol is getting so much credit for this team's success. CP3 deserved that mvp, it wasn't even close in my view!

John said...

Exactly... CP3 or Lebron... What the have done with the talent surrounding them is ridiculous.

Christina said...

CP3 is the true MVP. Anyone with half a brain could figure that one out. Why the hell do we reward Kobe for his teammates improving in the offseason while Kobe is demanding a trade?? Why on earth should he get credit for that?? And without Fisher betraying Utah and Gasol being gift-wrapped by Jerry West, the Lakers would've had no chance at the top spot in the West.

What I loved was after the game, when Gasol said he loved that Kobe kept shooting because it showed how tough he was, or something like that. Umm, really? You'd rather a player acting like he should be on his death bed taking wild shots than giving it to someone who could actually get something done?

There is NO way he deserved MVP. What a joke.