Free-agent story remains the same as ever for Kobe, LeBron


VIDEO: Where LeBron James goes, others (even former rivals) will follow

HANG TIME HEADQUARTERS — Kevin Love. Mike Miller. Shawn Marion. And perhaps Ray Allen (at some point).

Is there anyone else?

Is there anyone else willing to follow LeBron James wherever the road leads?

Gather any number of NBA players and ask for a show of hands and I guarantee you arms will be raised in rapid fashion.

This much is clear: where LeBron goes, others will follow. Even former rivals (Marion played on the Dallas team that defeated James and the Heat in The 2011 Finals.)

Marion’s weekend decision to join the homecoming party in Cleveland is just the latest evidence that LeBron remains the pied piper of his generation. It’s in stark contrast to what has gone on and what is going on with Kobe Bryant in Los Angeles. The Lakers’ superstar has always struggled to attract high-profile teammates willing to make sacrifices in order to play alongside a proven champion.

For two players who always find themselves grouped together in the same conversation of the all-time greats, the one glaring difference between them is the stampede of players that have run to play with one of them (LeBron) and the reluctance of so many to even consider playing with the other (Kobe).

Dwight Howard couldn’t get away from the Lakers fast enough when he was a free agent after the 2012-13 season. Fast forward to this summer and Chris Bosh and Dwyane Wade, as well as others, were willing to wait until LeBron made up his mind between Cleveland and Miami before they decided their own free-agent futures.

It speaks to the power James wields as the world’s best player. And it’s less of an indictment of Bryant, who will no doubt go down (along with Tim Duncan) as the face of his generation, than it is affirmation of the force of nature that LeBron is on the free-agent market.

A generation gap?

It should be noted that LeBron is in the prime of his career while Kobe is clearly in the twilight of his. Still, when Kobe was in the same position atop the league food chain, his contemporaries did not flock to Los Angeles.

They are, after all, from a different generation. They are from the era where this notion of partnering up with supposed rivals wasn’t nearly as commonplace or acceptable as it has become in recent years. Close relationships between players during the offseason didn’t lead to the Big 3s and super teams that have been formed in the wake of the USA Basketball-inspired conglomerates that came to fruition in Miami (as well as in Houston, Brooklyn and now, Cleveland).

The Lakers attempted to construct a similar situation by attempting to trade for Chris Paul, a move nixed by then-NBA Commissioner David Stern, in an effort to assemble a Big 3 of Kobe, Paul and Howard. Howard, of course, stuck around in a Lakers uniform for one year, leaving Kobe without the sort of superstar supporting cast that James has enjoyed the past four years.

James, Wade and Bosh, all Draft classmates, bonded upon entering the league. Their time spent working and playing together in the USA Basketball system only strengthened that bond. They got a chance to witness the power of the group dynamic again by watching Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce and Ray Allen join forces and win a title, and compete for others, in Boston.

By the time they all became free agents in the summer of 2010, the precedent was set. Four trips to The Finals (and two titles) later, it’s clear that the group dynamic can work when administered properly.


VIDEO: Miami’s “Big Three” talk in 2010 about why they joined forces

Different players, different styles

Kobe never was much for the group approach.

Go back to his earliest moments in the league. He was hell-bent on doing it his way, even with Shaquille O’Neal already established as the alpha dog on the Lakers’ roster. Veteran teammates tolerated a young Kobe because they recognized how unbelievably talented he was. Yet Bryant butted heads with Shaq and coach Phil Jackson in an often friction-based relationship that produced championship results.

It’s easy to overlook certain things when you are winning the way the Lakers did during that era, with Kobe coming into his own and then reaching the zenith with back-to-back titles with Phil and Pau Gasol as his No. 2.

LeBron’s first steps in the league included him deferring to veteran teammates like Ricky Davis, Darius Miles, Carlos Boozer and Zydrunas Ilgauskus when it was clear he was the most talented player on the roster.

While Kobe has always been perceived as the ultimate assassin, the closest thing we’ve seen in that mode since Michael Jordan, LeBron’s always been more of a superstar facilitator a la Magic Johnson. In those late-game situations — where Kobe always calls his own number — LeBron is much more likely to make the call for the best open shot instead.

Ultimately, it’s a matter of philosophy that has always separated these two icons of the game.

LeBron’s complete understanding of the importance of the collective was in place long before he walked across the stage on Draft night and shook Stern’s hand. He’s always been ahead of his time, on and off the floor. His latest game-changing move, returning to Cleveland four years after a bitter and public break up, was facilitated by the collaborative LeBron established with his team (LRMR Management Co.) years ago.

That decision is a testament to LeBron’s confidence and belief in himself from an early age that he would be just as comfortable doing things his way. And it’s very much the same as Kobe’s confidence and belief in himself before James ever was an NBA player.

Both of their approaches have produced championship results.

So there is no right or wrong way to navigate this process.

Maybe it’s just the evolution of things, from one era to the next, from one face of a generation to the next.


VIDEO: Relive some of the best plays from Kobe Bryant’s career

182 Comments

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  2. Damien says:

    Kobe – One of the greatest INDIVIDUAL players the game has seen. Lebron – One of the greatest TEAM oriented players the game has seen. So why do other potential TEAMmates flock to wherever Lebron goes? You can be smart and answer that on your own. All of you talking about these individual accolades to compare the greatness of one player vs another is irrelevant to the fact that in the end, players are going to where Lebron is and not where Kobe is. Basketball professionals who play the game for a living and understand all the nuances of the league are making this very important business decision based on truth rather than these dumb arguments that non-understanding sports fans are making. Its a TEAM game folks. Go back and watch the Spurs again for all of you who forgot just that quickly!

    • Best Commentator says:

      I agree. This proves that Kobe is a much better player than Lebron since he’s not able to attract that many great players to his team like Lebron is, so he doesn’t have as much help or as easy of a game than Lebron does. Last I checked, 3 out of 4 consecutive is better than 2 out of 4 consecutive. Kobe and Shaq defeats Lebron, Wade, Bosh, R. Allen

    • hnic says:

      Did we just go to Chruch! …..SHAZAM!

  3. kobeballhog says:

    This story is the most sensible most accurate ever. Only blind fanboys still defend kobe the goat ballhog.
    This is from a fan in the philippines

  4. Jason says:

    Kobe hasn’t struggled to collect five championships.

  5. Ryan41 says:

    This story is rubbish!

    NBA fan from the Philippines….

  6. marlon green says:

    I’m so tired of these silly arguements. Everyone just needs to ask themselves when the game in on the line and your life depended on it who would you go with to get you the win? No teammates, no getting players involved, no ghost calls from the refs on weak and 1′s just straight up get the win who would you pick? And lets really stop talking about who got the most players to come play with them. Seriously who cares!? Are we going to turn that into a stat now? What player is averaging the most off season free agent pickups? I just liked it better when players got drafted and tried to make the most out of their situation and if things didn’t work then they moved on. I’m not a big fan of rallying up the troops and stack the team so I could win while I’m supposed to be the greatest player in the league. AKA Lebron. And both of these players have attracted other players to come play with them or either re-sign with the team so stop with the nonsense. B Kobe has more rings right now regardless of who he played with. Lebron played with Shaq and won nothing and dont say he was washed up because when Wade got him he found a way to win with him. The way I see right now Kobe is up 5 to 2 bottom line.

  7. TD Touch Down “Common Sense when Sense is not Common” says:

    FACT:

    SHAQ is/was the reason why the LA Lakers won the 3 Championships when SHAQ was in LA please understand it was “NOT” the other way around!

    And because of this FACT Kobe will never be compared to MJ, because MJ was ALPHA player in all the Championships won by the Chicago Bulls!

    TD

    • Eddy Griff says:

      False. Pls stop. Shaq has never won without a superstar guard. He wouldnt have won without kobe. And he wouldnt have won without wade. not just any guard could help shaq win. (IE: penny hardaway and nick anderson)

    • dannygd says:

      MJ won nothing, before Scottie and Phil… Maybe he Was alpha dog before, but he wasn’t after – remmeber this.

  8. elRoger says:

    I think Lebron´s hunger for rings makes him asemble and destroy teams as a way of living, He tried with the Cavs, obviously couldn’t, then realized he could not do it alone so he went to Miami and gathered some friends to make a great combo, managing to get his beloved precious, after realizing his combo was not so great, he searches a small team with a lot of budget so he can make a new combo, we will see if this one works equally well in a near future, or else anew team/new combo on the way. Of course he is a super talented player, but I don´t know what’s best, to play and change team if it doesn’t work or to play and make everything posible to make it work (AKA the black mamba way).

  9. TD Touch Down says:

    Okay- Bottom Line:

    Kobe did not lead the team in the winning of Championships he was:

    with SHAQ Robin to Batman
    with Gosal he was able to, but if you look at the tape w/o Gasol the LAL would had lost.

    So how many rings did Kobe really win being the leader of the team and truly the Alpha Dog.

    I rest my case with the facts and nonthing but the facts.

    Peace!

    • Eddy Griff says:

      so its ok for lebron to have help and yet be the best player on the team but not kobe?? lol you sound silly

    • dannygd says:

      MJ and LBJ won nothing without (Scottie and Phil or Wade/Bosh/Allen/Pat) so stop spam about Kobe.

  10. william says:

    Players like the calls given by refs when Lebron is on their team. They seek that advantage the league give Lebron’s teams, they get bad call after bad call in their favor making the game easier for them. No fouls given, every miss in thebpost is a foul plus the traveling rule has been rewritten in favor of James who always does 4-5 steps before hitting a layup.

  11. ALVIN says:

    I guess the reall problem here is trying to compare NBA from before and now which clearly not the same. NBA keeps on developing through years. Players are now wanting to get a name on themselves and back then they want to be remembered as what they can do and on what is their best potential. I’m a KOBE fan alright but i also do not reject the fact that LBJ is also one of the greatest these men proved that they are best on what they do. And clearly everyone cant defeat time. You cant say that Kobe gets 30 shots while others do not. OF COURSE!!, he is a shooting guard whith the highest percentage to shoot clutch point then they would give the ball to him. And lebron can dominate both in the paint and perimeter he is really really hard to be defended. Kobe cant win a championship all by himself he needed stars also. As well as LBJ like in the 2014 championships you can see that he didn’t get as much help thats why they lost. And now all I can see are persons wanting to be with LBJ because they want a championship who doesn’t want that right. PLAYERS are great in their own different ways they strived to get there and we are enjoying basketball because of them.

  12. Chakad says:

    Hate Lebron

  13. Stan Lee says:

    Visit Angergeneral.com for some of the best NBA talk on the web! Not for the faint of heart!

  14. shotgun says:

    Nobody is bothered by how talent follows 1 guy and basically buys-in to a 1 team disturbing balance?
    MJ didn’t have anyone follow him, he worked with his original team since draft night until they jelled enough and won championships. I appreciate LBJ’s respectful demeanor and relationship-building kindness, but that’s it. I’d much rather see David Blatt create something out of a humble start, like Clippers are doing or Bulls. If Cleveland wins it will be the triumph not of friendships, but of $$$

  15. sandok says:

    lot of people say its kobe. kobe kobe who anchored the lakers in the past decade.. kobe is a talented player no doubt about that. but he need a teammate also to do the task. like jordan and the gang in chicago. so dont say its all about kobe in lakers. because shaq and a bunch of hall of famers are in his squad when they battled the 2000-2003 finals. years past he got pau and ron artest and a nice supporting cast.. with a nice coach also…

    now here comes lebron and his “CAVS ROSTERS” even you bet your life, we know all that he got a bad roster. but he still manage to put his team in the finals.. we also know that without lebron in MIAMI. they cant win championship. we all know that you can watch these replays on you tube. and you can also google the line up of kobe when he joined the nba compare to lebron who has nothing.. thats it moroons who keep comparing who is more talented

  16. John J says:

    MJ and Kobe can play 1 -3 position, LBJ 1-5.

    • hnic says:

      He played that one time lol one freaking time and people will ride it till the wheels fall off…..HE won’t be playing the 5 vs any legit centers, let’s just be honest here. He isn’t stupid. He doesn’t want to Howard or Cousins in the paint.

    • dannygd says:

      Go to doctor….

  17. John J says:

    MJ and Kobe were selfish, LBJ not.

  18. John J says:

    MJ and Kobe had great coach, LBJ not.

  19. Steve Novak says:

    Kobe will not win his 6th ring in LA Lakers. He needs to join Steve Novak at Utah Jazz for his next championship ring.

  20. omniballer says:

    Completely different circumstances kobe landed on a team with a top 5 center of all time. Who needs or could flock money wise. But pau demanded a trade … wanting to come to the Lakers. A different way of flocking.

    Off subject, record to date: LBJ swept out of the finals in Cleveland, lost 1 in Miami, won 2, lost his last 1 in Miami (2/5). Kobe (Shaq) won 3 lost 1, (Pau) lost 1, won 2, lost 1 (4/6). MJ won 3, won 3. (6/6). All beyond super – stars, Legends of the game.

  21. Showtime says:

    Seriously? LOL lets do this….All those hating on Kobe do not know basketball at all period. These would be the same people who brag and boast of Michael Jordan but Jordon in his own words put Kobe ahead of Lebron period end that discussion. Now this article fails to mention why big name players are not going to LA because they know there is no room for them It is Kobe’s team and either they fall in line or get left. Shaq thought it was his team and we all know the outcome. Dwight thought he would come into LA and run things and we see were that got him. Kobe took decent players and made them championships. All you clowns who think otherwise do not know the game. Where was Gasol’s rings before Kobe and LA??? Dwight has how many rings? If the cry baby stayed in LA he would have a better shot at one. Even the great Shaq how many rings did he have before Kobe and LA mmmmm?????? Please people you can bring in all the ifs and ands but bottom line is Kobe will go down as one of the greatest players ever period. In your own hater mind the story may be different but as far as the nba and the rest of the basketball world Kobe will be Legend.

    Face reality quit being a hater get a clue.

    • schoolya says:

      No one said Kobe won’t go down as a legend. The real argument is no one wants to play with Kobe. Everyone wants to play with LBJ. Simple as that. Accept the facts. LBJ is way more likable and is a better all around player. Why argue truth?

    • #dwade#flash says:

      @showtime your statements were totally irrelevant, idjit!

      and btw Shaq got one when he left and joined Miami, and with all the things you said about kobe, you showed us that how “SELFISH” your Kobe is.

  22. Frank says:

    Kobe hater: Kobe is a ball hog.
    Argument: So was MJ. Once ball hogging leads to no championships (MJ 6, KB 5), then I’ll bash all the games’ ball hoggers.

    Kobe hater: Kobe’s 1st three championships were because of Shaq.
    Argument: Maybe so, but Shaq was not able to win a title until he went to L.A., where Phil and Kobe were. All 3 needed each other. Besides, in Gm 4 of 2000 Finals, Shaq fouled out in OT, and KB single-handedly won the game for the Lakers.

    Kobe hater: Lebron’s ring count (or lack thereof) is not indicative of his greatness.
    Argument: Kobe’s ring count is NOT the reason he is compared to Jordan. He’s compared to him because of his play. KB didn’t win a title the year he scored 81, or the year he won the MVP. Yet, Kobe down the road will be remembered not just for his rings, but also for his individual accomplishments, just like MJ before he won any titles, or LBJ now.

    • schoolya says:

      Lebron already has more individual accomplishment and records then kobe

      • Eddy Griff says:

        but who else is there to battle lebron for mvp and other awards. when kobe was in his prime so were AI Tmac Vince carter and Shaq as well as several others. who is close to lebron now? KD? anybody else??

  23. sports fan says:

    Sekou Smith got it partially right. Kobe didn’t always struggle to draw other players. But now is the time when nobody wants to join Kobe because they all know that he is already past his prime (Who’d want to play with MJ on the Wizards? Get the idea?). Pau Gasol just left the Lakers and that says something – Kobe & Jim Buss are the real problems. It’s a no brainer that anybody would want to join LeBron now because currently he’s the best player who just went to the finals the last 4 seasons. Plain & simple – join the player who’s currently the best and stay away from the player who’s past his prime.

  24. Frank says:

    To be honest with you guys out there talking without thinking lbj is good and Kobe is better one you get compare to Jordan and the man himself saying if anyone can best on a 1-1 it will be Kobe it mean even the goat is scared of your talent so stop talking nonsense everybody need some 1to win a ring no body ever done it on they’re own so plz

    • Jordan was able to win 6 rings on his own. Yeah eventually he got more than enough help but he carried the load like no other player has ever done in my lifetime. And in his first 3 peat run he just had Scottie pippen. Every other player just helped every once and a while a la Paxton and Armstrong and Grant.

      • Eddy Griff says:

        lol u dont know bball. He had a supporting cast just like kobe did. if jordan had pippen why cant kobe have anybody???? lol kobe haters are funny. as good as LBJ is he needed help to win too. both are amazingly talented

    • schoolya says:

      Mjs opinion does not really mean a thing. Who cares what mj says now let’s see what he says when LBJ is done. Oh that is right people won’t care what mj says they will care what LBJ says. LBJ has already flexed more individual power over the NBA than any other player in history. Mj is old news and he knows it. Mj knows Kobe has no shot overshadowing him. LBJ has already done it. Hahahaha. Accept reality.

  25. Willie says:

    He attracted players Dwight Howard Steve Nash Jordan Farmer Matt Barnes Chris Paul was suppose to be one of them but the trade was blocked by the Boston Fan commissioner. The only bad is the Owners decided to hire a bad coach!!!!!!

  26. Christian says:

    If Lebron scores more than 81 points in one game only, I would say that he is the best basketball player than kobe, We just wait until the end of primetime era of Lebron. Only kobe who scores 81 points at MGM Grand Arena that those Active NBA players right now.

  27. kobeballhog2 says:

    How about the time wherein kobe bashed his teammates behind their backs. Talking smack about them dissing them thats your goat kobe fanboys. Can you deny that? Did he sincerely appologized for it? Kobe is not even on the top 10 great of all time. Did you ever see mj bashed teammates behind their backs? Did lebron? Thats the reason no one wants to play with the ultimate ballhog ever. He shoots like 30 shots a game while the next player takes less than 5 shots. Greatest ballhog ever. Only blinded fanboys give unreasonable credit to kobe. Shaq gave him rings. Fisher horry gasol gave him rings. Overrated

    • omniballer says:

      MJ bashed and berated his team mates! Which is why he never had a center on his team for long. That was the 1st 3 championships. When he came back he showed the leadership we remember at least on court.

  28. Aaron Sincere Kershaw says:

    LeBron just got Mike Miller and Shawn Marion to to join. That’s all the hype about attracting talent? Wow… Kevin Love is a trade. Like the Pau Gasol trade. We got 2 chips or if that btw. This is a story made by LeBron fans that don’t like Kobe. Who was saying this when we had Lamar Odom, Bynum, Gasol, Shannon Brown, Ron Artest, DFish begged Utah to release him to come play with Kobe. Steve Nash the definitionof team player and Kobe Rival signed and I didn’t hear this story at all. Where was this story? Irresponsible journalism.

  29. Swaggie says:

    And he would still dominate at 35 and win titles

  30. Swaggie says:

    Imagine if jordan came bak in the flesh ate age 35 he would have the whole nba on his dik that’s the tru definition of goat

    • schoolya says:

      Stop living in the past. LBJ trumps mjs power over the NBA. He is a better all around player then mj ever was. Numbers don’t lie.

  31. MIAMI says:

    Im a Miami fans and a Lebron fans before he left Southeast Beach

    I would say that :

    Kobe helped the LAKERS to win a Championship while
    MIAMI helped Lebron to win a Championship

    Kobe is Great but Selfish when it comes to the Ball.
    End of the Story

    • Huh..? says:

      Bahahahaha, Miami helped LeBron win a championship? Last I checked, LeBron was the reason Miami won those championships. Look at what happened when he left, players left and Bosh would’ve left as well if Miami didn’t give him a RIDICULOUS deal of a LIFETIME. People like you are disgusting, he left to go home and you should be grateful that he got you to 4 straight Finals, otherwise Miami would’ve been irrelevant as usual. What has Miami accomplished in the past decade? 1-2 good years when Shaq came to town, other than that.. garbage and now you hate on the 1 guy that made Miami a somebody.. That’s Miami fans in a nutshell folks.

    • asas says:

      Dont you mean Lebron helped miami win titles? lol

    • schoolya says:

      So lebron didn’t help Miami win? That is funny. Where would Miami have been the last four seasons without LBJ? Not a good argument.

  32. Rza says:

    Lebron>Kobrick

  33. Tom says:

    Anyone with any real basketball knowledge knows that LeBron is better now than Kobe has ever been. To even compare the two is pointless. All the kobe fanboys on this site posting ridiculous comments that vastly exaggerate Kobe’s accomplishments are just morons. Every single one. Try actually watching basketball and not getting all your info from your friend’s twitter pages. Lebron is a vastly superior talent….a vastly superior player….and a vastly superior human being. Kobe is a self centered ball hogging glorified womanizer.

    • Jazz Fan says:

      Wow, I cannot believe that you would talk bad about Kobe, who modeled his game after the All-Time Great – Jordan. Think about what you say before you post it on sites like NBA.com. Narrowminded people like you give the NBA and Fans a bad name.

      By the Way, Jordan was 6/6 winning Finals, Kobe is 5/7. Lebron is 2/5……… Get your head checked on who is greatest, because there are many other greats that accomplished less in terms of championships and more in terms of career play like Karl Malone who if they played against LeBron would play as well or better than him if they were matched up. Karl Malone by the way was better than Lebron is now during his prime in the late early 90′s.

    • Cuban connection says:

      By the way……Did he ever returned his sneakers to his mom?
      I am not sure if he ever did it

  34. harriethehawk says:

    This is a typical boring summer article.. And they chose to talk about a player from a boring team, the LA Fakers.

  35. whydahate says:

    Man reading these comments gives the impression a lot of you guys don’t fully understand the game. LBJ is a great player and so is Kobe. Its just a lot of players dont want to play with Kobe becuase of his injuries, style of play, and him on his way out. LBJ is more of a share the ball type player who is in his prime so players know they have more of an opportunity to win with LBJ. This is not taking anything from Kobe.

    To those who say Kobe didn’t play with any stars Lol. He played with what some consider the most dominant big man to ever play the game. Lamar Odom and Pau Gasol was no joke. Also Fisher and Phil Jackson. All of these guys will end up in the Hall of Fame,

  36. Rex Jackson says:

    Clearly shows that lbj is a team player while kobe is selfish

  37. Kobe-Nash-Hill-Boozer-Young says:

    Kobe just needed a center to go to 3 trips to finals and 2 championships.. Lebron needs a truckload of superstars to win..

    • European fan says:

      Well lets just admit that shaq wasnt just a center. At the time he was the most dominante nba force. It was like a sophmore lbj playing with chamberlain or. russel. He would have won rings as well. Oh and dont come talking about how lbj played with shaq as he wasnt the force he was when with kobe

  38. jfack says:

    when it comes down to it.. if i could watch any random game in kobes prime or lebrons prime i would choose to watch kobe. throw mj into the mix then it would be him.

  39. mike jordan says:

    what if the lakers make the 2nd round of the playoffs?, at least…would this article matter?…

  40. mike jordan says:

    how about chris paul?..he wanted to play with kobe and howard at that time..this rgument just started when kobe always insisted that Bynum should go, who once became the best player on the roster..artest played with kobe, even he is his mortal rival the past year..its just don’t see kobe now as good as LeBron, they haven’t seen him play in over a season, I think that’s also one reason, but I bet you, after this season, where kobe will be playing healthy many stars will also be attracted to play with him..many times in kobe’s career that many coaches also would dream to have him on the team..kobe is great..he is just old and injured

  41. Sha says:

    You say Kobe won as a side kick but then you guys say he can’t play with others…. Does that make sense. Lbj is a opportunist and fool people all the time. Like why he went home, in Kobe era players wanted to win against the best to prove them self, while now players are move like movie stars acting. Lbj is great but you can’t compare him to Kobe. My opinion,

    1st Jordan
    2nd Kobe
    3rd Iverson
    4th the other great players

  42. Eric says:

    It’s amazing that we can’t just appreciate the greatness of Kobe and Lebron. I’m a lifelong Laker fan and can honestly say the Lakers wouldn’t have won those (2000-2002) three championships without Kobe. Shaq was a very dominant force and was integral those championships but that doesn’t diminish Kobe’s role. The addition of Pau Gasol, the play of Lamar Odom and other role players along with the brilliance of Kobe Bryant led to two more championships. There is a negative bias that contributes to fans not fully appreciating Kobe. The 2008 US Olympic wouldn’t have won a gold medal without Kobe.
    Lebron is also an all-time great. He took an undermanned Cavaliers team to the finals against the Spurs. He won two championships with the Heat. He’s of the most versatile and talented players of all time.
    Both of these men are all-time greats and champions. Even though we have favorites, knowledgeable fans know both of these players will go down as least the top ten players all time. All the haters need to give it a rest already.

    • Rouphelas says:

      You have really good points but I wanted to rip my eyes out with a ice pick read ALL OF YOUR grammatical errors.. Go back to school

  43. Kelz says:

    It’s crazy to compare LeBron’s situation with Kobe’s! Let go back 7 or 8 years ago and see who would be following who. It’s always when we are retiring when those who couldn’t best us in our primes that talk the most trash. I like LeBron James, but Kobe’s legacy at this point is ahead of LeBron’s…, obviously now, everyone is rooting for the home coming King. I’ll have to admit, it would take this type of cinderella story from LeBron to not only best Kobe but probably will become the greatest sports story ever told! Great PRing team James.

  44. dann says:

    It’s quite hilarious and stupid to compare an old Kobe Bryant to a Lebron James at the peak of his powers. We all just want to act like this man hasn’t done ANYTHING at all in this league. It’s easy to dog a man when he’s on the way down. I didn’t see all these articles popping up in the middle of the 2000s when nobody could touch him.

    People seem to get this completely STUPID and twisted notion that you’re only a good team mate if you have 3-4 superstars playing alongside you. How many bad team mates do you know have contributed MAJORLY to multiple NBA titles? Are you telling me that all the guys who have won titles on Kobe Bryant Lakers teams would rather have not played with him during those periods?

    Pau Gasol had not won a single playoff game in 8 tries before he joined forces with Bryant in 08. I’m pretty sure Pau prefers his two rings to playing with “good team mates that everybody loves”. Shaquille O’neal was already dominant before he came to L.A but he didn’t have the post-season success to go with it UNTIL Kobe Bryant came of age in 2000. And apparently this guy is just a bad team mate who tagged along and didn’t really do much.

    Landing big free name agents has little to do with Bryant and more to do with the state of the Lakers right now. They did not have a coach during peak free agency season. They had only 3 players on the roster and were coming off two abysmal seasons with no reasons for optimism with a Kobe Bryant coming off injury. If I was an old veteran dying to win a ring as soon as possible, I obviously want to do it with the best team and the best player possible in his prime and right now that man is Lebron James. That’s not a knock on Bryant at all. It’s just a realization by veterans that their window is closing and they might as well take the best possible shot at a ring. Same thing goes for a superstar who has toiled so long and hasn’t won anything. You’re under the pressure to get that monkey off your back and if you’re moving teams, you want to join the team that gives you the best chance to get that monkey off your back. Quite simple.

    If Bryant was the best player in the NBA in this era of friendly rivals, I guarantee you he”d have at least 3 of them on his team. Chris Paul damn near sued the NBA for nixing his trade 3 years ago. Why would Chris Paul be so unhappy if Kobe Bryant was such a bad person to play with?

    • Marco29 says:

      I agree with the major part of your comment: Kobe is not in his prime anymore and coming back of surgery and Lakers are in such distress that they are not attractive for vets seeking a ring.
      Also,everybody seems to forget how Kobe + Shaq attracted The Mailman and the Glove in 2004 who hoped to join forces and win a title. Nash made the same move a few years back hoping he might win a title before retiring.

  45. Baker says:

    I have to say you guys who say its all about the Rings need to really think about that. Robert Horey has 7 I believe, does that make him better that Kobe or MJ? If your gonna harp on rings then you forgot Fisher 5, Russell 11, Duncan 4 (or 5)etc. This is a simple argument nobody (any levels of basketball down to the playground level) likes to play with a ball hog. Kobe has 1 regular season (and I question that 1) MVPs. Most valuable player, Kobe has 1. Lebron has 2 Finals MVPs Kobe has 2 (even though his shooting percentage was like 30%. Shaq carried the Lakers throught the first 3, could have been a lot more if Kobe would have shut up and played his role. Watch the last Shaq/Kobe finals, I dare you. You will notice Shaq dominating the first half and then not get the ball the second, because Kobe had to get his. Anyone with half a brain would have kept feeding Shaq. He causes foul trouble a double/triple teams. Not Kobe, gotta get his. Just like this year take max dollars and criple the team salary cap, Kobe gotta get his.

  46. An interesting way to compare these two players, Sekou. I’d like to ask one question for sake of argument:

    How often has Kobe been in the position to really need to attract major free agent help to the Lakers? (and how often, when that was the case, did the Lakers fail to do so?)

    Seems to me the Lakers were a mess in the mid-2000s when Shaq had left and Kobe had to score 35 points per game. They could have used a free agent signing then, which they didn’t get. But it wasn’t really too long before management swung the Pau Gasol trade… Then after the Chris Paul trade went south, the Lakers did manage to get D. Howard. These weren’t free agency pick ups, true, but the point is that the Lakers have been able to find ways to put talent around Kobe so that there was – maybe – less demand for free agent signings on the Kobe-Lakers than has been true for LeBrons latest teams.

    Plus, Kobe is writing the checks…

  47. marshsned says:

    The truth is not a contrast between James and any specific player. It is a stretch to hit Kobes reputation in comparison because of so many inconsistent variables. It’s not the same – It’s just about James in this case. If Kobe went “home” to Philly in his prime w all variables the same, you’d probably see the same thing. Same w KD and Melo etc.

  48. Here it is says:

    Kobe is great player in his own right. His era of sgs and sfs based their skill around taking over ball games and being one-on-one players. People always say that Kobe knows how to win, but if you look at his finals performances and percentages it is clear that he has been enormously fortunate in his career. The biggest difference between Kobe, and MJ and Lebron, is that Kobe was practically born in to winning in the NBA. He won his first ring in his fourth of fifth year, and it was clear early on–96′ through 99′–that he and Shaq’s Lakers team was going to be good, if not great. Shaq handled teams, and Kobe is given way too much credit because he sells tickets and he leaves fans and viewers awe-struck. He’s an incredible talent to watch, but he isn’t even close to Lebron in terms of efficiency and winning the right way. He was only decent against the pacers and sixers, he was garage against the pistons, and hardly performed against the celtics in the finals. The only two finals performances he has had that were noteworthy was against the Magic and Nets–and the Nets were pretty weak, too. I love Kobe, I respect Lebron, but they’re two completely different players, in different eras, so comparing them is pointless. But if I have contradict myself, then so be it: Lebron is the better individual player. Lebron has showed up in almost every finals he has been in, and his supporting cast is who to blame. He didn’t have the help against the spurs in their first meeting, and he didn’t have the cast this year against the spurs either with d wade in quick decline, and no shooters breaking out the lights–a la’ battier. This years spurs would have beat any of Kobe’s shaqless teams, and probably any other team in past six years.So Lebron’s finals record is not indicative of his greatness. Kobe went against far easier teams, with much more help. Shaq is arguably one of the most dominate players ever, and those teams that they played would only be average nowadays.

    • al says:

      Your forgetting LeBron plays in a very weak east where it’s almost guaranteed for any team he’s on to win. Kobe has been out west where bottom teams would be top seeds in the east and don’t even make the playoffs.

      • Here it is says:

        Yeah, clearly Lebron’s had an easier time reaching the finals, but the point I am making is even in the finals where Kobe goes against the East, he performs only decently. Obviously it’s has been harder for his Lakers teams to reach the finals, but even so he doesn’t show up on the biggest stage–which is against the East. So that East vs. West debate doesn’t make that much sense, and is kind of overrated.

    • adonis says:

      i watched lebron choked many times in the finals even the finals against dallas :) ur right wade is on the decline but that heat line up is a starstudded line up so i disagree with u :)

      • Here it is says:

        Yeah, but dude, Lebron still shot 47% in that series. Kobe has only had one finals series where he shot over 47%. Did you even watch the lakers vs the pacers, or the pistons, or even Boston. Against boston in the clinching game seven he shot 6 for 24. Is that not choking? Anyone who truly watched Kobe’s first three championships knows that Shaq carried their team, and Kobe played great defense and shot only moderately.

    • Eddy Griff says:

      so do u not remember the milk carton “memes” of lebron in his first finals appearance with the heat? or him completely giving up against the spurs? or how about when in game 3 i believe when the heat went down 20 by halftime and lebron had only taken 7 shots. yea he never gives up -____-

  49. Bashing Kobe? says:

    did you seriously just dog Kobe Bryant in this article? really?

    Maybe you should say Kobe won without other superstars BECAUSE HE DIDNT NEED THEM, and that Lebron is 2-3 in finals WITH mega stars!!!

    This isnt even an argument man, Kobe is WAY better…its not even close

    • Anthony says:

      Thank you!!!!

    • MR JAY says:

      i have to argue with u there buddy..this article clearly says it all..kobe is more of an elite scorer..cmon he scored 88 in a game, lebron is more of a player..he gets his teamates involved, hes better on defense, he rebouds, dont get me wrong i love watchin kobe play lights out, but thats not wut were talkin about, lebron is the better ball player, plain an simple

    • Killah Dz says:

      The author is pointing out that most other players would rather play with Lebron than with Kobe and his reasons why.

      While Kobe has done some amazing things as an individual I have not enjoyed watching his game over his career because his game is so self focussed, he’s a selfish player. As far as winning is concerned, that is great if you are always on. The Lakers game post Shaq has been: give the ball to Kobe and if he’s having a bad night, everyone else try make something happen. I think players dont want to play with him because they will always be a second option to the individual style of basketball.

      Lebron on the other hand will use his team mates if they are in a better position than him, he plays team basketball and makes the players around him better. It aint hard to see why other players would rather play with Lebron than Kobe.

      I enjoy watching five guys playing their best in synergy with each other much more than watching one guy make an amazingly difficult shot while the other four guys clean up his mess. Selfish basketball (Lakers, Knicks) is boring but watching five guys click and totally own another team is amazing to watch.

    • taekayo says:

      If Kobe doesn’t need them, then why did he gave an ultimatum to the Lakers management to get him superstar team mates or be traded back then? This was after the Shaq era, when Kobe can’t get his team to the playoffs by himself. Or you just forgot about it?

      BTW, not an LBJ fan either. I do respect the talent both has, but the NBA really has to stop babysitting these Divas.

    • Cuban connection says:

      Well…..you should keep in mind that there were several centers not willing to play by kobes’s side
      Shak…Bynum…Gasol…Howard……..

  50. jim says:

    So you’re telling me that Kobe Bryant could not attract high profile free agents but still won championships? Spin Spin Spin!!!
    And your’re also telling me that Lebron James can’t win without those high profile agents? SPIN SPIN SPIN

  51. TheKush says:

    When it comes to PROFESSIONAL sports it’s all about management! For any company to function at it’s full potential the people at the top have to know how to lead. Jim Buss is no Jerry Buss it’s really that simple he manages to get Dwight Howard and instead of getting a good coach he signs mike d’antoni as if Kobe Bryant’s Lakers didn’t dominate Steve nash’s Suns in the prime of Steve Nash’s career.

    To make matters worse mike d’antoni is a one trick pony with limited coaching ability which ultimately resulted in both Howard and Gasol leaving. There are high expectations when playing for the L.A Lakers where because of showtime simply winning isn’t even enough. Jerry Buss took risks but Jerry Bus was also smart enough to look at the bigger picture where as Jim Buss thinks that he can just throw a bunch of guys together and win a championship.

    Professional sports doesn’t work like that It’s not a coincidence that the Spurs have been so successful for three decades that franchise maximized what they could get out of Tim Duncan they did what they could even with a limited budget to put themselves in a position for success.

    Pat Riley for example is someone I have the utmost respect for, the Miami Heat just lost the best player in the world and what did Pat Riley do RIGHT AFTER LBJ LEFT He gives Chris Bosh a ludicrous contract to show the league his commitment to CONTINUE winning. Will Chris Bosh be worth the money? I doubt it but it sets a precedent for excellence it shows that as a franchise the Miami Heat are doing what they can to stay on top it also shows that if you dedicate yourself to the Heat they’ll throw large sums of money at you! That Chris Bosh contract has all players around the league thinking of playing for Miami! I don’t think Jim Buss understands the NBA and because of this the Lakers probably won’t be good for a long time! Lucky for them a healthy Kobe can put people into the stands.

  52. Celtics_Fan says:

    This is the most ridiculous article I have ever read in my life, I do not even see the point.. The NBA should allow readers to rate the articles in my opinion, in order to avoid this kind of waste of time if you know what I mean.

    • Archie S. says:

      You know what.. I actually agree with that suggestion. the article is awful and is disrespectful. Yes, Kobe is in the twilight of his career. Lebron is in his prime. Kobe is taking the heat for free agents not flocking to him after coming off of INJURY, two awful seasons, and howard leaving. The lakers obviously are rebuilding. who would want to join in at this time of chaos? The cavs however are a team with budding talent not even including james coming off of 4 finals appearances and 2 of them championships. Can you really discredit kobe enirely for the situation given the circumstances? entirely TWO different circumstances BESIDES and not just 1 factor of a talented lbj vs a talented kobe drawing free agents. give respect where it is earned!

  53. Rah says:

    Please stop with the lucky ring of the Heat! The Lakers had the same thing happen when Kobe airballed a game winner and Ron Artest picked up the garbage. I’m not going into the times Big Shot Bob saved the Lakers or even D. Fish just to get to the finals. Kobe can’t do no wrong in his fans eyes and don’t see the truth. Top teir players don’t want to play with him because his ego is bigger than the team. If Kobe didn’t shoot 30% against the Pistons instead of differing to Shaq whom was shooting 60% he would have had six rings. Kobe is selfish and that’s why he can’t co-exist with other Alpha’s. Dwight left, Carmelo chose to stay on a horrible team, Lebron rather play in CLEVELAND and Miami when he was free. The only thing Sekou missed is that Bosh and Wade didn’t follow Lebron to Miami nor did they wait when the team was formed. Wade was never going to Cleveland and Bosh wasn’t either. That’s why they took a picture with an open seat for Lebron before he made his decision. Wade has 3 rings not 2 the last time I checked.

  54. dreadyjun says:

    This is the most stupid post I have ever read. They don’t follow lebron, it’s just how things worked out. What other team could have offered the wolves someone like wiggins? What other players followed lebron?, Those other players you are referring to are exactly wanted by other teams. This post is rubbish.

  55. dreadyjun says:

    It’s not like Love and the wolves had any choice. You play with lebron, expect to be the go to guy. Cause lebron is a choker so he will look for you to take the tough shots. You come to the Lakers then you have to perform, it’s not Kobe, it’s the Lakers must win thinking. If you can’t stand the heat don’t come to the Lakers.

  56. Eldwig says:

    do you think kobe will get championship if his in other team or if phil jackson does not his coach? I remember Kobe and shaq already together but only got rings when jackson arrived and when shaq and phil jackson left the lakers and kobe did not even reach playoff?

  57. TTKIN says:

    Fellow NBA players didn’t exactly flock to MJs Bulls either. What is the point? That we are at a point where veterans are fine playing for half their worth while playing half the mins they could get somewhere else?

    Back in the day, veterans wanted to contribute to the teams they were on. Now they are fine playing 5 mins at the end of the game with a 20 point lead. Just so long as they get that title at the end of the year.

    And it’s actually all of our faults. We put too much emphasis on winning the NBA title. Other countries don’t do that. That is why players from other countries will play in the Olympics even with a serious injury. Meanwhile, we have guys pulling themselves out cuz of “an extended playoff run”…which was the second round…not even the conference finals…not even the nba finals. Looking at you LaMarcus.

  58. Bill says:

    Lebron James, 2 victories, 3 defeats in the NBA Finals. So close to 1-4. Not an admirable record.

    • hilljr says:

      Now do me a favor……….make a list of all the greatl players who havent even won one…..So many people like to ride Lebron for his finals record. Some guys don’t even have appearances.

  59. Lakeshow says:

    Kobe (1 MVP, 2 finals MVP) pales in comparison to the best player of the generation (2x MVP, 3 Finals MVP) and an all time great in LeBron (4x MVP, 2 Finals MVP) who still has a long way to go.

    Kobe’s high volume, low-efficiency ball is a thing of the past. If it weren’t for 3 sidekick rings on the back of an incredibly dominant Shaq Lakers team, we wouldn’t even be having this discussion.

  60. 1Dog says:

    this is one of the most stupid article ever, If that so accurate why did lebron left cleveland again. Ho right becouse noboday wanted to joint him there except for hasbeen.. I mean come on son get a new job !

  61. liontamer says:

    don’t forget Bill Russell’s 11 RINGS!!!!

  62. Jae Porter says:

    Stars partnering up was just a lost arc in the early 2000′s all before that it was done & worked half the time what it comes down to is who you can stand to be around & play with/ lead you for the duration of a season. Lebron is just proven to be the best in the world right now & an overall stand up guy. Who doesn’t wanna play with a guy like that

  63. Andrew says:

    Even tho I don’t like Cleveland or Lakers If they gave me a choice who to play with I will definitely side with Kobe. In my opinion he has more heart and drive and deserving for rings.

  64. Aguilar_Mamba says:

    #Pau
    #Shaq
    #GPayton
    #KMalone
    #D12

  65. Nick says:

    Kobe and Lebron play different positions, for one thing. Having said that, Lebron has a better all around game. Heck he averages almost 7 APG – more than a lot of guards! When he first got in the league, though, I believe all of the hype was too great on his young mind and he played more like Kobe – shoot first, ask questions later – in an attempt to live up to being the “King” (a stupid nickname anyway in my opinion). I applaud him for maturing into and playing his game in spite of all the negative attention whenever he made the right basketball play at the end of a game instead of jacking up a shot. His stats now speak for themselves.
    I agree, Sekou, that they played in different era’s (Kobe being in the twilight). Basketball used to be (I’m almost 60 years old) a thrilling team sport. The old-time Celts, Lakers, Knicks, Bucks, Pistons, would make your eyes water with the plays they would make. Ball movement was the only way to be a champion. Much of Kobe’s time in the league was what I call, the “one-on-one” era, which I find quite boring. I am very happy to see the up-tempo, hit the open man, type of play coming back. That happens to suit Lebron’s game well.

  66. It's about the Ring says:

    MJ = 6 rings
    EJ = 5 rings
    KB = 5 rings
    LJ = 2 rings (and one was lucky 2013)

    I’m sorry but Lebron really needs to show me more before he can be in this conversation with any of these guys. I know I am nobody but he is barely half way there to the ring count of all three of these guys.

    • mike says:

      They are discussing a players ability to attract high profile free agents, not greatness.

      You are doing LBJ a great injustice by breaking down greatness souly in terms of championships. By your logic there a bunch of Celtics from the 60s who would be on the same page as mike, magic and kobe. And thusly by your logic “I know I am nobody but he (mike, magis, and kobe in this case) is barely half way there to the ring count of all three of these guys(Bill Russel, in this case)”

      Greatness of a player is not defined by number of championships alone.

      and in refrence to 2013 being lucky… one shot in one game was lucky in the 2013 finals not all 7, and they were lucky because the Spurs never boxed out Bosh and left Ray Allen wide open… Sounds like Miami did the right things and earned the championship.

      • It's about the Ring says:

        Clearly we got some Lebron fans out here. He will never be considered the greatest without winning it all that’s just the bottom line. He’s already probably the greatest friend maker in the leagues history.

        And if Jordan or Kobe or Magic played in Russell’s era I’m sure they would have had something to say about those 11 rings and 7 straight championships.

      • TEG says:

        @mike- you saying the Spurs didn’t box out or left the shot open sounds more of what the Spurs did wrong than what the Heat did right. it seems there was luck somewhere

    • Do what it takes to win says:

      Lucky? Lol, it doesn’t matter. That “lucky” opinion won’t follow him to the hall of fame :)

    • Nielsen says:

      how about duncan?
      5rings 2-1vs lebron
      manu n parker each has 4

    • noodle man says:

      If it was about the ring then Sam Jones would be better than all of them. Have you even heard of him? He has 10 rings. That’s right Bucky, TEN. So no. Actually it isn’t about the ring. John Stockton is the greatest point guard who ever lived. Never got a ring. Charles Barkley, Karl Malone, Patrick Ewing — all in the top 50 of all time and not one ring. You don’t win rings w/o great team mates. It took Jordan 7 long years to get his first ring, until after he had been joined by Scottie Pippen and Horace Grant. Kobie has never won a ring w/o a dominating big man.

      I don’t know what “more” Lebron needs to show you but he’s 29 years old so he’s got a lot of basketball left. Stay tuned.

      • It's about the Ring says:

        Dude Lebron has played with several great players and only got it done twice. You can’t tell me Sam jones was even close to being the best player on his team or even sniffing an MVP trophy. And yes Stockton and Malone and Charles were good; they were great, but guess who was better Jordan. That’s why they have no rings because they just weren’t good enough to compete with greatness.

    • Bernard says:

      U say it’s lucky becuz u didn’t like the outcome. The reason u foul late in basketball is for the chance someone misses free throws (manu&khawi) and leaves the door open. Ray Allen is a great 3 point shooter who hit an open shot to TIE the game. So get over it the Spurs had overtime and then a game 7 in which LeBron had 37&15

    • Hunter Smith says:

      Robert Horry has 7 rings…. What’s your point?

      • Why are y’all comparing these average nba players to an Elite player like Lebron. If Robert Horry was in the conversation for the top ten greatest player of all time then that would make since. I’m comparing Lebron to greats because that’s the standard we hold him at. If he is suppose to be as great those winners I named or greater then he’s gotta win more titles. He has no excuses eventhough we media people and fans are constantly looking to give him one.
        It’s about the ring.

    • CTLANE says:

      These arguments are CRAZY and FRUITLESS. How can you compare one to the other or one career to the next. Let’s celebrate both their careers for what they both have represented for their generation. I will tell you a secret……Basketball is a TEAM sport. The best player on the best TEAM wins championships. Karl Malone and Charles Barkley were Great players who never won a championship. But they both had champion hearts and talent. Just the wrong place and wrong team at the wrong time. If Kobe stayed healthy who knows. I know Shaq was not the best center
      of all time. I know Kobe is not the best guard of all time. I know Lebron is not the best Guard/Forward of all time. But……I think being in the discussion says volumes.

    • European fan says:

      Okay. You are forgetting many players
      Bill russel 11
      Horry 7
      Havlicek 8
      Sam jones 10
      For that matter top 3 players of all time:
      1-russel; 2-jones; 3- havlicek
      Of course rings dont define who the best is (even though russel might well be the best for the run). Is james jones as good as chamberlain? Or mike miller better than garnett? Or chalmers better than stockton? Or fisher better than malone? Gasol better than ewing?

  67. CILLL says:

    LBJ is great i think he understand what it takes to win championships….money dont win championships….kobe took that high extension n want to win a championship hahahaha good luck…he believes he can win it by himself….kobe u would retire wit no more rings….spell team wit an i first THEN kobe when u do u would win again.

  68. Akash says:

    This article is a joke.. So you measure a player by number of friends he makes? Or the WINs?? Lets discuss when LBJ gets 5 or more..
    If Miami had a won a title this year.. the story of “going home” would not have come.. So its all being opportunistic… Players go where the titles are.. and if you talk about loyalty,, LBJ is far from making a point.

  69. bonesdiferous says:

    I think Kobe is viewed as a jerk by his peers. The NBA and the media try to cover it up as best they can, but the way players respond to him makes it clear. He is an incredible player and that should be his legacy, but his ego is clearly coming back to hurt him.

    • SoulChorea says:

      This doesn’t explain the nixed CP trade, or back when KG was considering going to LA (before he ultimately decided Boston), and Pau Gasol…or Steve Nash, etc…it’s not that the peers don’t want to come; it’s just that the Lakers haven’t been good at making it happen. CP seemed genuinely excited when it looked like the deal was done

    • TEE says:

      Thank you!

  70. JJ says:

    Easy Guys:
    1. The Article say; Lebron early named the Un-Cluth Player (He was freeze at the end, everybody know).
    2. The Style: lebron don’t have style, just can dunk the Ball coming from the front..and never will doing something like this:

    (Pls See Min 1:05) this is style lol
    3. Nobody Follow Kobe, because is a Lakers Player, no going and returning and moving to another team if can’t win the Ring…
    4. Definitely the NBA is an company, and as company you need to renew and keep the stability, know is the Lebron Time the player than need 2 promote,
    5. Kobe 2 more Rings without Shaq, and Shaq???
    Why if Shaq was so disgusted with Kobe stayed 3 Rings next 2 him???
    6. Lebron or Miami, now i’m confuse, the 50% stay with Miami, another with Lebron lol, the Issue here is When Lebron Leave Cleveland, something never see happened, the Fans set on fire the Jersey and now are playing with “Ice Jersey Challenge” lol

  71. kev says:

    Why does the big 3 in miami come up as the ones who started it all? Remember Boston with garnet.. ray allen.. and paul pierce?? Miami came after.

  72. "smart NBA fan" says:

    Kobe is still the best not lebron. Kobe has 5 nba championships how many does lebron have 2? cmon gimme a break sekou your a joke man. get off lebron bandwagon already.

    • Jae Porter says:

      Get off the Kobe bandwagon. Lebron has at least 5-7 years to catch up to Kobe & Kobe has maybe this season to catch Jordan & that’s not gonna happen

  73. nile says:

    haha., all kobe diehards call this article biased.,

    what a joke!

  74. Dragutin says:

    Lebron’s way is the right way and his carrier at age 37 will reflect that.

  75. kobeballhog says:

    Here comes the blind Kobe fanboys defending the greatest ballhog ever, this article is so true, even in his twilight he still won’t budge as the I and only I in the team, he won’t even budge his overpaying salary for the betterment of the franchise, he kicked shaqout of Lakers he kicked Dwight out of Lakers, playing with him is like him against 9 people on the court, he never made teammates better, its his teammates that made him better shaqgave him championship fisher gasol horry gave him championship, truly the greatest ever ballhog in the NBA.

    • Kristian Tran says:

      There is an I in win

    • Ashray says:

      2000 finals shaq foul out kobe steps up neither shaq nor gasol nor by any means fisher,every time game on the line kobe hits game winning shots, 5 rings…..30000+ career points,81 points in a game…..so

  76. Alan Hollway says:

    What you are failing to acknowledge here is the fact that Kobe Bryant has a reputation of being difficult and that reflects on the reluctance of some star players to head to Los Angeles, his public spat with Shaq sent a big message to many would be partners, they were the dynamic duo you didnt need a big three the dynamic duo were better with a solid support cast. Gasol and Ron Artest were solidly second fiddle to Kobe and that is the way that Kobe likes it. Having said that, if the money is right most players will still consider a move, as an example, Steve Nash and Dwight Howard. But it is an interesting observation even of these too. Nash was at the end of his career and miilking out a few more million bucks and with no one else knocking the door down Kobe and the Lakers was his last roll of the dice to win a championship, Dwight on the other hand as you pointed out couldn’t get out of the place fast enough. Kobe has tarnished his reputation somewhat for not being a team player or team developer he cannot be compared to Tim Duncan. The lakers now have to let Kobe roll into retirement within the next two years before they can rebuild properly.

  77. Bob the magic Hornets says:

    No one wants to play with Kobe and His Kobe system, I believe they have the money to sign any player they want but the case is no one wants to play with Him.. Yes Kobe is a beast and he is a great player the question is “is he a good team mate”?

  78. Andros says:

    Kobe Bryant -BEAST

  79. nbabear says:

    easy.. Kobe’s a ball hog.. he makes himself always better and not his team mates (most of the time).. an opposite of LBJ.. MJ and Magic respectively..

  80. LBJ says:

    i love the king.
    i wish I can smell his jersey right now.

  81. Kristian Tran says:

    This is the most biased article I have ever read. But I feel like this is the views of the NBA being expressed. Lebron will continuously be put on the pedestal by the league

  82. Paul says:

    I seem to remember plenty of big name free agents flocking to the Lakers and Kobe Bryant. Karl Malone, Gary Payton, Steve Nash, Chris Paul (attempted), Dwight Howard, etc. Personally I favor more of a team style of play and recognize that there’s no “I” in team, but recall Jordan’s famous reply that there is an “I” in win.

    This headline seems designed to kick a guy when he’s down. Easy to do, but less than admirable.

    • Celentano says:

      Karl Malone and Gary Payton came to lakers because of shaq and Phil .,, not because of Kobe… Fixed!

    • You're an idiot says:

      Haha, you got it wrong. The guys outside of Chris Paul and Dwight Howard came to the Lakers not because of Kobe but rather due to Shaq and Phil. Kobe, the social recluse at the time, did not partake in any of the recruiting measures to acquire those guys. Secondly, Dwight was traded to LA, but he wanted to go to either Houston or Brooklyn, so he didn’t get there by Free Agency. Chris Paul was probable, but I think he would have wanted out of LA after year 1, period…

    • You're an idiot says:

      Oh, and I forgot one more thing. Steve Nash was supposed to be the Point Guard for the Lakers when he joined, but he didn’t get that opportunity because Kobe wanted to jack up 20+ shots a game that season, so yeah…

  83. SLC says:

    I think Kobe in his prime is better than Lebron in his prime, even now Kobe has better foot work and in my opinion more heart.

  84. xo187 says:

    Worst story ever!

  85. Duh?! says:

    LeBron is a team player; all-inclusive. He lets his talent lead and others naturally want to follow. Kobe is an A**hole, he likes to bully people into doing things his way, and when they don’t, it casues “issues” within the team and system. This has been since the days of Shaq, so the point at which each player currently is, in their respective careers, does not matter. You attract more bees with honey than you do with vinegar!!

  86. loyalty says:

    I laughed hard at the title. So true!

  87. NostraDameUs says:

    That’s because there wasn’t as much of this stacking the team nonesense when Kobe was in his prime from about 2005-2010. If you went back in time, the exact same thing would happen. Who’s the better player (from an owner’s perspective)? the one who jumps ship for titles (Lebron) or the one who remains loyal and committed to one city and one team.

    Personally, I think it’s foolish to compare these two. The Celtics began this stacking trend in 2008 I beleive. Nonetheless LBJ is a great player, the best, however asides from the medias obsession with him, he hasn’t been that much more spectacular than Kobe.

  88. in a 2008 espn magazine the players voting they would most want to play with LeBron. and the player they would not want to play with was kobe bryant

  89. kevin says:

    ill take 5 rings over 2 anyway. what a stupid post.

    • Celentano says:

      You mad?.. Kobe said” I got 5 rings just give me the ball!” And if they lose.. ” pull your big boy pants!” FACTS…

    • Common $en$e says:

      really the 5 rings vs 2 rings argument again? if Lebron had Shaq they would not have lost vs detroit and probably wouldn’t have broken up either. Besides Kobe only has 2 Finals MVPS being the main guy sooooooooo

    • 5ft5 says:

      so you would take bill russell over kobe because he has 11 rings???

  90. ko0kiE says:

    and the main thing is, kobe’s perception is dulled… he still believes, he’s one of the best players and signs that 48 Mio $ extension. Nobody can blame him to take the money he was offered by the Lakers but he crippled the franchise for the next 2+ years. they can’t possibly get enough good players without paying luxury tax.

    players nowadays are business men too, not just in negotiating their contracts, but also in evaluating their future teams and their markets.

    The Lakers have to offer much, but not much can be gained as long as Kobe is there.. he’ll get the max contracts, the top ads gigs, the plays called for him etc etc. and he will always be their leader, so you have subordinate.. which has been acceptable 5 years ago, but not now especially with the lakers at the bottom of the Western Conference.

    the only highlights laker fans will get, are kobe reaching some historic invidual milestones and maybe some uhhs and ahhs what the mamba still can do at his age.. but it won’t produce any postseason success.

  91. Mitchell says:

    It’s also probably the fact that Kobe is a selfish player that only cares about himself yet demands a championship team while LeBron just wants to be in the best position to win bc he knows from past experiences that he can’t do it himself (nobody can).

  92. Lakers4Life says:

    Kobe will always be better than LeBron. That’s just my personal opinion. Lakers could have won the championship this year if they got Carmelo. Kobe doesn’t need to waste time like LeBron in order to know what players play what roles like Miami in 2010. I personally believe that Kobe-Shaq duo was better than “The Big Three”

    • RG says:

      Lakers could have won the championship this year if they got Carmelo? ummmm, no, they wouldn’t. they probably still wouldn’t make the playoffs this upcoming season even if they had gotten Carmelo during this offseason.

  93. Fred says:

    It seems like other players have this kind of perception of Kobe Bryant, and it does make you think. The last year Kobe played full-time he was more of a facilitiator, but I think that the focus on the number of rings he has has hurt him the most. The individual awards are all he has left now–and that’s going to make for a really long season for the team. I’m absolutely sure that he’s thinking about that now. But, it is true that he never “bonded” with any close friends, except for Pau Gasol, and the team management always made Gasol’s life as miserable as they could. So, in my opinion, there’s been a dynamic at work that has worked to produce this difficult situation…the death of Dr. Buss, and the leadership whole that left. Howard was a bad fit from the beginning–he needs a team built around him. Howard should not be surprised that he simply will not win the championships–it will be the Magic all over again. But, I wouldn’t put Howard in Kobe’s “generation.” He belongs with LaBron’s generation. Bottom line: it’s the evolution of the league, and different personalities. It’s always personal.

  94. Ranjit says:

    Feels Lebron management edited this article ! I can also argue that Kobe did not need 3 superstars to win titles !

    • Celentano says:

      Any superstar name will win title if pair with prime Shaq back then..(mcgrady,Vince carter, iverson etc)..why can’t all this fan boy accept the facts that Kobe ride those SHaq waves…we’ll I guess just like old saying ” truth hurts”.

    • Common $en$e says:

      I can also argue that Kobe had one of the most dominant Centers in Nba history to win his first 3 titles and had a very strong supporting cast. your argument has so many holes in it. Besides that who was the 3rd superstar that lebron needed?

    • Jae Porter says:

      No not at all just one of the 50 greatest players of all time. Don’t forget who was the finals mvp of 3 of those championships

  95. timothyhoward says:

    Everybody wants to play with lebron.he’s the man.go Cleveland.

  96. Bill says:

    “They are from the era where this notion of partnering up with supposed rivals wasn’t nearly as commonplace or acceptable as it has become in recent years.”

    Yeah. I hate that about this era.

    • D. Frye says:

      I’m a Laker fan, but to be truthful I have to give Lebron his props to. Kobe did have shack but so did a young Penny , nick Anderson and Dennis Scott along with a still very good Horace Grant and they never won, so Shaq neede Kobe to. Yes Shaq did dominate in the fimals, playing against the likes of Rik Smits, Todd Mccollough and a overmatched Mutombo, but remember in the WCF Kobe was the man who got them there. Shaq is no doubt a beast, but so is KB. lebron while great remember he asked for Mo williams and he asked for Shaq and he asked for Antwan Jamison and when it didn’t work out he cut out which is fine because he was a free agent. LBJ will go down besides Wilt and Kareem as the most efficient player of all time, but he is Basketballl’s Peyton Manning all the stats but never the rings. Also when talking about Kobe being a bad teammate, remeber every where Shaq went he ended having problems, Penny in Orlando, KB in LA, D. wade in Miami and even Steve Nash in Phoenix so don’t sayt KB is a terrible teammate Shaq had problems to. Kobe is hard to play with but remember this Dwight Howard cut because he is soft and they lost to Portland this yr in 1st round with supposedly the best C and SG in the world and if they are so gerat they had money why di nobody want to play with them , as for CP# never even been to a WCF, facts are facts, Kobe is top 5-6 all-time with Magic, Mike, Wilt, Russell, Abdul Jabaar and Bird. LBJ in the next tier of 7-10 but will probably get up to the top 3 by the time he is done, but for right now Kobe’s legacy is better, but LBJ is the better player right now.

      • sports fan says:

        There are very good reasons why Shaq’s Orlando team never won. Shaq ran up against Hakeem in his prime in the finals and the next year they lost in the conference finals to MJ’s Bulls that went 72-10 for the season. Shaq and Kobe needed each other but Kobe really needed Shaq more than Shaq needed Kobe. Shaq as Lakers team leader is 3-1 in the finals. Kobe as Lakers team leader is 2-1 in the finals.