Friday, July 01, 2005

Kobe, me myself and I revisted

I bashed Kobe pretty hard at the end of this season for his poor
leadership and his inability to play like a superstar this past year
when that's all he seemed to want for a long time. I think he
deserved it. But lost in the recent hoopla surrounding the hiring of
Phil Jackson is what Phil's return says about Kobe's mentality and
attitude. I don't expect any open mea culpas, however I think the
return of Jackson signals that Kobe was humbled a bit by last years
experience. I think Kobe realized the way he was going wasn't the
right way and he's reaching out for help from the only true mentor
he's had in the league. After the book Phil wrote Kobe couldn't be
blamed for trying to keep Phil out of L.A., but instead I think Kobe
is intending to take the criticisms he gets from his coach and other
knowledgeable basketball types and work on his weaknesses instead of
just deflecting the criticism. If that's the case the Lakers are going
to be a much improved team and I think Kobe may be ready to try and
change his errant ways. I may be reading too much into this, but
that's the feeling I get. I know it's been denied that Kobe had any
decision in the hiring, but Jackson said that he and Kobe discussed
this before it happened and seeing as Kobe is signed for a long time
one would have to be very naive to think that superstar players have
no input on coaching and personnel decisions. I may have to revise my
opinon on Kobe in the near future.

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