Kobe Bryant, Lakers, Allen Iverson discussed on Slate's Hang Up and Listen
In the beginning of his NBA career? It's weird because the the you know as you as you guys talk about in the Post Denver years that wilfulness became almost like a brand right like his sort of singular focus became his brand Dan before. Then that was definitely like what he was known for. It was that he was when he was like at Lower Marian. It wasn't just that he was six when he was reelected in high school but that he was sort of a workhorse. I remember a year after the draft Allen Iverson. Kobe was always in the same. Alan Iverson draft but the sixers drafted Larry Hughes the following year. And coming out of sort of someone. Just the pickup games in the area was that Kobe. Bryant had outplayed every guard who've been playing sort of in the sixers orbit and there were some people apparently wanted the draft Kobe Bryant and the sixers brass apparently because he was just that advance even though he was obviously still a kid but there was a lot of talk that he was going to be a better pro but at the time it was still very anomalous for high school players jump to the league and was also especially anomalous for back at court players to do so and so I think there was a sense that there was going to be this weird difficulty. Spike that you know that that might not translate to the League as effectively as we all know it did. Yeah the one person who didn't I didn't have any qualms about that was jerry. West of the Lakers isn't that there's a story that Brian comes out talk to do a workout for the team. pre-draft and West leaves the workout early and says I've seen enough. He's already better than anybody. That's on our team right. Now right I mean and I think it was a bunch of layers in the Philadelphians relationship for the Philadelphia choice ships. Kobe Bryant I think I sort of resented him personally because when you into the Lakers looked like he was in line to supplant you know Temple Legend Eddie Jones owns aptitude arbitration. I didn't like who is this kid. Like I love that he does and so I had like this long. Interminable list of reasons to Alex do dissipated. It's weird because you mentioned this right class of ninety-six forty-one still like Kobe is always sort of been part of the celebrity landscape in my life. Right and and you know we talked about the brand thing the rap career I remember in some of these media appearances that he'd made over the years to he was clearly like trying to make himself self into a thing like he was on in the house. Remember the show with you. Yeah right he and Derek Fisher like went on there and I was like Oh man I just totally. I totally forgotten that like Hobie hit spent a lot of time like trying to build this image of herself as something more than a basketball. He wasn't just like other dudes. Don't forget the destiny's child video. Yeah yeah that's right. That's right bugaboo. He was in Bugaboo to yeah. I think he was very open with us. I mean he wanted to be will Smith. That's what he said. But isn't that isn't that. A characteristic of Kobe is entire career that he was always looked like he wanted to be something else. In addition to being the greatest he was always really trying very very hard until later until later. I think one of the things that always again like that. I guess spills where it say. What was greeted me about him whether he seemed like such try? Hard That I mean his dalliances dalliances with hip hop. I think a lot of felt like that was like rich. Boy 'cause play you know like he was like you know. He's from the suburbs of Philadelphia. He's you know the child of an NBA player right. He's like ah a rich suburb of Philadelphia. Lower Italian yes exactly right. He's sort of this cosmopolitan kid. Who was trying what seemed right so some of us like I'm trying really hard to be like someone that he wasn't which probably wasn't completely fair for us to think that but you know we were teenagers and I wanted to give to be like you know judicial judicious affair but he always was like clearly positioned himself to be like this pop culture? Figure is kind of remarkable to think. I never really thought about this until yesterday but like the pre rape allegations Kobe. Bryant was just how ubiquitous a pitch man. He was he almost got there right like I mean he was McDonald's commercials. I still remember. That one was a precocious kid walking off with them and like I challenge you to play one one Kobe and he's sort of like how bees Kobe gentle figure which is like almost impossible to imagine you. You know Kobe. The last fifteen years Being somebody who was like joking around with a kid who will be like cutthroat. Oh you know what I mean like. He sort of was clamoring to be that person. The sort of like pop culture figure in a way. That didn't always seem graceful. Felt very very deliberate. It felt very erotic right. Because I remember you you probably Ali remember this right. It seems remarkable to say this. In retrospect but that all star game where he was named MVP in Philly and they booed him and he'd like look legitimately hurt. You know I would never have imagined it like if you move fourteen years. You could never imagine Kobe responding that way looking hurt by the crowd loud booing him right absolutely. I remember that was legitimately surprised by that and I think that was this. Part of the other thing was like Hobie was due to talk about himself as a Philadelphian and was also like genuinely generally disliked by Philadelphians. Once it became a pro. I mean he was a Laker right so he one of our. You know historical rivals. I think there was a sense. That he wasn't isn't real Philadelphian. There's all this stuff that was layered into this contempt for this dude. And the fact that he played for the Lakers. And there's a lot of antipathy Timothy Around.