Kobe In Defense of Lebron James and Russell Westbrook
So, right when you thought Kobe Bryant was laying-low, rehabbing his shoulder, enjoying his generous income of $20+ million dollars per year, he caused somewhat of a stir on social media. Moreover, instead of defending why he’s so great, or taking a jab at his teammates behavior after a win, as he did on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Kobe in defense of some of the NBA’s biggest stars was unexpected.
Russell Westbrook had a remarkable statline recently where he dropped 54 points along with 8 assists and 9 rebounds. And although he achieved his career high in scoring, headlines all across the nation highlighted the fact that he did it on 43 shot attempts. This isn’t anything that Russell hasn’t dealt with before — he’s dealt with harsh critics throughout the entirety of his career, mainly for attempting to be the hero in situations in which he “should have” played more of a Robin role to Kevin Durant’s Batman. What the media forgot to mention is that he shot 43 field goals shooting an astounding 49%! That’s where Kobe stepped in.
Using a Tina Fey (as Liz Lemon from 30 Rock) referenced meme, The Black Mamba wrote “54-9 and 8 Ast 49% from field…But all the media cares about is the 43 FGA’s.” Kobe Bean Bryant is far too familiar with that sort of criticism. This is now the 2nd time we heard Kobe Bryant vouching for Russ. During a 1-on-1 interview with Ahmad Rashad recently, Kobe chose Russell as the one player he believes embodies something of Kobe’s competitive spirit. What’s interesting is as much as Kobe cared about the criticism, Russell himself did not. Russell went on to say, ““I don’t really give a damn what nobody thinks, to tell you the truth, man, I really don’t care. Every night I go out and compete harder than anybody else in this league and I’m proud of coming out and my teammates don’t have problem with it. I’m good with that.” Boldly honest statement by the guard out of UCLA, let’s see Kobe step in for King James now.
A day after, Kobe was backing up LeBron’s career. When @PaulBrahan tweeted: lbj has yet to prove he can win a championship without 2 other superstars. KB24 tweeted back, “Lbj doesn’t need to prove that @PaulBrahan I had Shaq + Pau Mj had Pip Magic had Worthy + Kareem etc AND we all had great teammates.” All points that I am in total compliance with. But what’s gotten into Kobe? I know this isn’t the Black Mamba talking. Bored? Passing the torch? Who knows? Keep tweetin Kob!