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What will Kobe Bryant say in his Hall of Fame speech?

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The contrast couldn't have been any more different.

One year after Michael Jordan lambasted his critics by name during his induction to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, former teammate Scottie Pippen thanked everyone who got him there. One year after Jordan oozed his arrogance by making it all about him and no one else, Karl Malone displayed his humility by shedding a tear after making it about everyone else. One year after Jordan boasted that players, including, himself, win championships, Lakers owner Jerry Buss modestly suggested the same thing.

Basketball writers who covered this year's Hall of Fame induction certainly noticed the difference in tenor. NBA.com's Scott Howard-Cooper observed, "In the first enshrinement since Michael Jordan hijacked the ceremony with a petty verbal hit list, in the summer of labor negotiations and The Decision, eight individuals and two U.S. Olympic teams were enshrined in the Hall of Fame on a Friday night that will be remembered for heart and, thankfully, the positive emotions." ESPN Los Angeles' Dave McMenamin noted that in Buss' acceptance speech, "There wasn't a hint of arrogance to him. He didn't throw up both hands and spread out his fingers to represent each of the 10 championships his teams have won in the 31 seasons since he took over in 1979." And Ball Don't Lie's Dan Devine summed up the theme of this year's Hall of Fame induction this way: "Honoring the game and yourself by staying true to your essential nature."

This got me thinking into what the tenor of Kobe Bryant's Hall of Fame speech will be, whenever it is. Will it consist of that competitive arrogance and score-settling that Jordan spewed? Or will it simply showcase Bryant's intense devotion to the game he loves that this year's inductees demonstrated? No doubt, there will be elements of both. I'm sure he'll at some point boast about winning three rings at a young age and then showing his ability to lead a team after Shaquille O'Neal left. But I'm also sure he'll wax nostalgic and show gratitude for Jerry West immediately recognizing his talent at such a young age. I'm sure he'll poke fun at his critics for saying he's too young to lead a team, can't win without Shaq, too selfish to be a good teammate, and lately, too old because of his numerous injuries. But I'm also sure in a sense he'll express appreciation for the wild journey he's experienced.

I remain uncertain, however, on what the overall theme will consist of through his speech for multiple reasons. Though I've followed his entire career as a basketball fan, I just started covering the Lakers six months ago, and I won't even pretend that I know much about him on a personal level, even superficially. Though I've been an observant reporter and have taken note on his viewpoints since I started covering the team, I've always thought solely using someone's interactions with the media is an unfair and incomplete way in outlining someone's personality.

Besides, Bryant has changed his public persona over the years from being an overly generous and insightful player during his rookie season, being a closed and guarded individual during the Colorado aftermath, his relationship with Shaq and his frustration with the organization and most recently a mix in between. During Bryant's tumultuous time during the Colorado case, respected NBA writer Jack McCallum quoted a source close to Bryant as describing him as a "cold and calculating man." Yet, The Times' Mark Heisler had covered and known Bryant since the beginning of his career and wrote that he knew Bryant fairly well and described him as "very nice and very laid-back, but arch-sensitive about his image." before 2004 in which Heisler noted he fell out of Bryant's "the circle of trust."

Even with my limited exposure to Bryant, I couldn't help but notice how much of a contrast he showed before and during the NBA Finals and immediately afterwards. Before and during the title run, Bryant remained stoic and insisted he didn't care one bit about his legacy and what it would mean to beat the Celtics in the NBA Finals. After the Lakers secured Game 7, Bryant shared his vulnerabilities and acknowledged he forced the issue in Game 7 because the stakes meant so much to him. A week later during his exit interview, Bryant appeared as laid back and relaxed as I had ever seen him, speaking in a genial, jovial, comedic and introspective manner to reporters about his injuries, his Game 7 struggles, his off-season plans and his love for the game.

The contrast shouldn't really be that surprising. Bryant locks himself into a competitive mode and the aftermath revealed a player content with winning. But those scenes struck me because it made me wonder what would Bryant be like once his basketball career ends. Would he be happy enough with his accomplishments and well enough removed that he'd speak in his Hall of Fame speech with the same infectious enthusiasm he shared during his exit interview? Or would he still hold that competitive spirit and feel the need to prove his dominance in the basketball world once again?

Feel free to provide your thoughts in the comments section below. 

 --Mark Medina

Follow the L.A. Times Lakers blog on Twitter: twitter.com/latmedina. E-mail the Lakers blog at mgmedin@gmail.com

Photo: Kobe Bryant holds the championship trophy during the Lakers' parade through downtown L.A. Credit: Christina House/For The Times.

 
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Kobe Speech will start with something like this:

"I have 6 rings more than " Shraq, The Big Green Ogre" and four more than MJ" so i'm plessed now that i'm the GOAT.

Good Morning Laker Fam,

Just wanted to stop in and show the family some love. Thanks Art for honoring me, our Laker family and the journey by reposting the complete journey to get Ebanks and Caracter to Lalaland and become a part of our beloved Lakers. The best is yet to come! Go Lakers!

The only signing this offseason that puzzles me is Theo Ratliff (aka "The Mineral Man").I mean, he seems like a decent pick-up, but with Shaq signing with the acursed Celtics for the league minimum, it's a little odd.

Posted by: Jon K. | August 18, 2010 at 10:28 AM

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Jon K - I totally with you on that. I think a lot here are over valuing Theo...especially when Shaq could've been had for the min. All it would have took is for Dr. Buss to do what he should've done a long time ago (since PJ wouldn't do it) and that is tell Shaq and Kobe that he wasn't going to have any of more of this foolishness cause its HIS TEAM...not Shaq's and not Kobe's.

Hilarious about the Lebron 3rd person thingy. Always reminds me of the Jimmy episode on Seinfeld.


Posted by: LRob | August 18, 2010 at 10:46 AM

Hey all - quick post. Have to work....

I was thinking this same thing during the HOF inductions. I think Kobe will use his humor to make his points but also be very humble.

His girls will be teenagers so I think it will be something he carefully writes because he will realize the importance of being an example to them that they can do what they dream.

Cheers - PLG

Jon K and LRob,
Theo is a tough guy, he can do it.
Oroblem here is match-up. Last season Bynum had a hard time w/, for example, DH. We had to move Gasol to DH, and he did a pretty good job. I'm not sure how Bynum will play D on Shaq, but having Theo AND Gasol will do the trick.

Shaq burned the bridges to LA and while Buss will likely retire his jersey...there's still some edginess between Phil and Kobe behind closed doors. They also know they don't want Shaq to complain about minutes and besides Phil has Gasol/Bynum available in the post not to mention that Kobe was much as he isn't in a feud no more with the Diesel still has some animosity about Shaq for example while Bryant allowed O'Neal to have the All-Star MVP trophy in 2009 (they both won it)...Bryant didn't join O'Neal in saying the feud was a media thing.

Though I do have to ask MM....what would you do in those Shaq-Kobe feud days? Would you try to interview Shaq and Kobe though not get as much quotes as you would like to from them or exclusively interview one (Shaq or Kobe) knowing that the other isn't going to really want to talk to you after? I ask this because Phil has stated that if one reporter stayed too long with one superstar the other superstar wouldn't be as warm to that reporter.

I hope Kobe starts out with something like this,

"First of all, I would like to exonerate Del Harris for holding me back during those first couple of years. Sure, I'd have another 3000 points on my career total. Sure, I'd have another couple of seasons of highlights. However, keeping those tight reins on me in the beginning only intensified my hunger to be great, to be a champion. You probably extended my career by a few years by not giving me enough tick. My incessant and violent drives to the rack would surely have resulted in a catastrophic injury or two. Thank you, Del Harris, for giving me the rock in Utah during the playoffs all those years ago. Those airballs translated into a near career-long constant drubbing of the Jazz in the playoffs. Thank you for letting me watch Eddie and Nick show Derek and I the ropes before we became who we are today. Thank you for allowing me some time to blossom as a young man, playing a man's game. I have seen what youthful petulance can lead to, and I learned from that. Finally, I urge you all, Don't Blame Del Harris. I don't."

Or something similar, I don't know...

DBDH!

Kobe Bryant is a sports enigma. His personality tends to clash with others, but that is true of many people who master their craft. Yet, he is far more intelligent and informed than most people give him credit for. I think his speech would be what most would consider "bland" or "cliche" at times, but I believe his competitiveness would be on display as well. If he chose to take shots at opponents it would be far more sarcastic, and he would probably end his speech with a smile. A smile knowing that he went down as the greatest player of his era.

LRob,


I think Mitch may have been looking for someone who would be okay with playing very limited minutes but could serve a defensive mentoring role for Andrew. That's my guess.


What do we play for? RINGS!!!


Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.


GO LAKERS!!!

When Kobe is inducted in the Hall of Fame, his speech will be surprisingly gentle and positive.


So much of what Kobe does is to protect himself from being distracted because he recognizes the media is there to distract him. Being committed to being his best, he is extraordinarily wary of being distracted, thus he looks upon the media and the sports machine as a kind of enemy.


Once his competition legacy is complete (in about eight years), he'll let down the facade and will present himself in a far more relaxed fashion.


What do we play for? RINGS!!!


Lakers Today... Lakers Tomorrow... Lakers Forever.


GO LAKERS!!!

Well Said Don't Blame Del Harris. You touch upon a point that has been a major part of Kobe's career in that Kobe was never given the spotlight when he came into the league. He had to earn his way to stardom.

Bharath Venkat, (again) nice try...but no, thx

"At least I have x more than Shaq. Word. Peace out, yo!"

I really hope his speech isn't as bad as Jordan's was.

Was I missing something with Bharath Venkat's post? Why was it and mine deleted? Is he some kind of troll or something?

About Kobe's HOF speech; there's no reason that he wouldn't or should be humble. So that's how I think he'll be.

Go Lakers!

MM - you really need to stop jacking my comments and posting them as your own threads. This is justa ridiculous.

Seriously though, I also believe Kobe will be very gracious and humbled by such an honor. The Kobe that we see during a game or series is the focused Black Mamba. That won't be his mindset during his HOF induction speech. We'll see the relaxed Kobe. The guy who's smile is infectious. The Bean who loves the history of the game and recognizes the magnitude of such an event, such an honor. I can't imagine him being anything other than extremely appreciative, happy, gracious, humbled, honored - all the adjectives that you can't ascribe to MJ.

Rocky - yeah - he's always got a comment on here trying to jack the blog over to his own...

Who you callin' an enigma TNT. Next you'll be calling me a homo sapien.

Just funnin' yah.

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DBDH, the thing is I DO BLAME DELBERT HARRIS! SECOND WORST LAKERS COACH EVER! (MIKE DUMBLEAVY OWNS THAT MANTRA.) Not Joking... Some Head Coaches are Championship Caliber (PJ), Some are Strong Talent Developers (Larry Brown--I know he has one ring, but more of a developer), and then some are just Good Assistant Coaches that got a head coaching slot (Delbert).

Oh Yeah! Nick "CANCUN" Van Exel taught Fish Everything He Knows? Yeah, Right! More Like Jerry West and then PJ, Tex Winter and the Experience Gained From Ron Harper.

Eddie Jones is a Class Act and I'm sure Kobe learned a few things from him, but Jerry West and Byron Scott were his mentors. Eddie was a peer, first and foremost.

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I still wonder whether trading Eddie for Glenn Rice was necessary to win the first championship. The team would've had more cohesiveness and, who knows, they might've even Four-Peated.

Yes, Jerry West made the trade, but Shraq kept on claiming the reason they didn't win was because they didn't have a "pure perimeter shooter". Shraq kept demanding through the media that he needed a "pure perimeter shooter to open up the middle (interior) play" in 1999--the year before PJ and Company came to town.

Even PJ believed that Eddie fit in better in the Triangle and that Elden Campbell would've also fit in.

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Kobe's induction speech will be about his long and winding road (Thanks Mr. McCartney) and I believe Derek Fisher will be introducing him at the HOF Ceremony.
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GO LAKERS!!!!!! ONE, TWO, THREE-PEAT TO THE SECOND POWER!!!!!!

Ahh, I see. Thx Justa.

Go Lakers!

"I still wonder whether trading Eddie for Glenn Rice was necessary to win the first championship."-Triangulator

Great point. Glen Rice was a guy who needed the ball to be effective. Being a spot up shooter, he was good at, but it wasn't his specialty. He was more of a post player when he averaged 25+ points for Charlotte back in the day.

Plus, Eddie wasn't such a bad shooter. Eddie would hit three's and was just an all around good player. I still remember him and Vlade leading a good Hornets squad.

I don't know if that trade was more to bring in a shooter or to pave the way for Kobe. Maybe a little of both.

Go Lakers!

M2, this is a great subject for a thread.

At this stage of his life, Kobe is all about his legacy. No matter what scores Kobe might want to settle, he will be even more sensitive to the importance of how he wants his HOF speech to be remembered.

Kobe's HOF speech will be tinged with grace and humor. He will talk about the great players before him and how he learned from each of their games. He will talk about the honor of spending his entire career as a Laker, and praise his teammates like #2 for their unselfishness, his respect for Phil (although that was not always the case), and his appreciation for Jerry Buss.

Kobe Bryant understands marketing. Kobe will be all about marketing his legacy. The ironic part is that those of us fortunate enough to have watched him at work already appreciate that legacy. No words are needed.

Rocky,

I agree that, at the time, Jerry West was probably also thinking about paving the way for Kobe. But Shraq's constant whining for a perimeter shooter sealed the deal.

With that said, you have to wonder whether PJ and Company was already in the works during the lockout shortened season.

PJ said that he had envisioned Eddie and Kobe in the backcourt together (big guards). Maybe PJ was already contemplating coming to the Lakers before the trade was made.

At worst, Eddie would've made a great 6th man with Ron Harper at the point.

Unfortunately, we'll never know.
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GO LAKERS!!!!!! ONE, TWO, THREE-PEAT TO THE SECOND POWER!!!!!!

@Triangulator - On Eddie Jones for Glenn Rice
I think in the wake of repetitive playoff futility with a squad that featured Jones and Van Exel as the starting 1 & 2 with Kobe coming off the bench at three positions (shooting guard, small forward and even point guard where on his first trip up the court, he was called for a 10 second violation) and not possessing the bulk he now carries to bang with the bulkier small forwards of the time, getting an aged GelnnRice kind of made sense, at the time.

Eddie had been hurt alot (paving the way for Kobe PT, despite Del Harris' objections) and Glenn had just come off a spectacular season (in a contract year, hmmm). Phil was coming in and wanted a solid three point threat. Even though Glenn never shot that well as a Laker, he was still a threat from the outside and that freed up a little more space for Shaq to operate. Glenn's perimeter orientated game fit better with Shaq than Eddie's slash and drive game. Eddie's game often forced Shaq out of stronger, more effective position and we had a better slaher in Kobe waiting for PT. I liked Eddie as a Laker, but loved the championship that Glenn brought.

Shaq would deeply affect the chemistry of the Lakers, Shaq just can't help trying to be in the spotlight. He might say the right things but Shaq is not going to be happy not getting his. Shaq is also not a great defender and the Lakers need somebody to protect the rim, thats why Phil keeps pushing Bynum to be more of a pressence defensively. I actually think if the Lakers wanted one of thier old centers Kwame would have been a better choice. The best option to back up Bynum; Marcus Camby but obviously he was not avaiable so Mitch went after Theo (hoping like all of us he still has something left in the tank). Theo was a very good defensive center in his prime. I would love for the Lakers to trade Bynum and Sasha for Noah and one of the Bulls shooters (Kroover maybe).

I think Kobe will be gracious and offer praise for teammates, coaches, owners and possibly even staff. He will say that it is an honor to be included in conversations amongst the greats of the NBA landscape, and depending on how many rings he has, he may even take a shot at the Jordan/Kobe comparisons. Overall, I think he'll talk up conditioning, adherance to a work out routine, never stop analyzing your opponent and we'll probably get a Sun Tzu quote. Also, he might show up in his jersey, or "purple and gold armor" as he likes to call it under his suit.

I just hope he wears a purple and gold orchid as a corsiage.

Another point - Kobe is way too cognizant of NBA history to get involved with his ego. He will pay tribute to all those that came before him especially those that contributed to his moves/shots, etc.

MJ was all about self and not others.

Cheers - PLG

I'd like to reframe my comment, Glenn Rice helped bring us that first championship, Shaq and Kobe did the lion's share of work. Didn't want to get ripped for insinuating Glenn Rice was *the* deciding factor. He helped, but Eddie and Kobe playing defense together was a sight to behold. Eddie was always an underrated defender.

Kobe's HOF induction speech -

In his career Kobe has constantly alluded to his respect for NBA history and those that came before him. I think his speech will have a lot of that mixed in. Also, he won't be trying to keep from being distracted, so I think he will "let his guard down." It may be the most honest we will ever see Kobe so I'm really looking forward to it.

I don't even like thinking about what he'll say at his induction because that means he wouldn't be playing anymore. I can't even think about that.

GO LAKERS!

Jamie Sweet "Phil was coming in and wanted a solid three point threat."

Actually, as I stated earlier, Phil actually stated he felt that the team was better before the Glenn Rice trade. He even wrote that in his book after the 1st championship.
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GO LAKERS!!!!!! ONE, TWO, THREE-PEAT TO THE SECOND POWER!!!!!!

"Kobe's HOF speech will be tinged with grace and humor. He will talk about the great players before him and how he learned from each of their games. He will talk about the honor of spending his entire career as a Laker, and praise his teammates like #2 for their unselfishness, his respect for Phil (although that was not always the case), and his appreciation for Jerry Buss."

Posted by: Rick Friedman | August 18, 2010 at 12:12 PM

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Right on Rick!

This is exactly how I imagine his speech will be as well. With maybe an extended thank you to Jerry West and the influence he had on him.


Hey MM,

I nominate this as RCOTD.

great read from ross tucker at SI on brett favre...

http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2009/writers/ross_tucker/08/19/favre/index.html

and to add to that... rucker was also a guest on romes talk show this morning. some other good points he made:

-- favre has repeatedly said if he returns its not about the money.. then why the heck would you hold the vikings hostage and ask for another 4MIL? you lying rat bastard!

-- his teammates dont say it publicly but you can bet they hate him privately.. you really think other 10 vets like hutchinson on the team wanna go through training camp while your leader is skippin out by saying you wanna retire every year throwing a media circus..

and lets also not forget he also timed his surgery right before camp.. basically to use that as an alibi to skip camp so he can rehab during COMPANY TIME. sound familiar... hint shraq

and then every year for the last 5 years.. knowing full well he's returning he throws a media circus with his DECISION.. sound familiar.. hint LeCRAB

but what really upsets me is he expects this preferential treatment.. almost like hes above the team.. skipping camp etc... sound familiar.. hint Bonds.

so yes in my conclusion favre is a combination of Shraq/Lecrab/Bonds all into ONE... he's a lazy manipulative self centered dramaqueen... and after all these years the truth is just starting to surface NOW.

oh and add CHOKER to his resume... like last year giving the game away on a bonehead throw (that he would later BLAME his receiver for not coming back to the ball)... superbowl puhleasse.. yeah he got one and it took a miraculous desmond howard return because favre never came close to smelling a superbowl mvp.

i'm just getting started here.... sorry to deviate from bball.. but this guy is a SCUMBAG.

Triangulator,

I agree that Fish would be the one giving the introduction at the HOF ceremony. Not sure about the text of his speech though. Looking forward to that day.

Hey yellowfever,

Quit being so modest and tell us how you REALLY feel about Favre...

LOL!!!

@ART… “I think it would be really cool if Magic owned the Clips, in LA. You know he would want to build a team to challenge the Lakers. Two powerhouse teams both from LA, the country would hate LA even more.
I think that would be a fun WCF match up, Magic's team vs Buss' team. Suppose any Laker fans would become Clipper fans?”
~
LOL. Nobody in their right mind would ever give up the Lakers for the Clippers or any other team. How many Celtics fans do you think have become Pacer fans due to Larry Bird. I actually am sorry to hear that Magic is interested in owning some other NBA team just as I am sorry to hear that the Logo is now interested in signing up with some other franchise. There is something special about being a Laker for Life. I hated seeing Gail being traded to New Orleans or Joe Montana as a Chief or Jerry Rice as a Raider. Those are things that should never happen in a perfect world and more proof that newer is not necessarily better.
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@LARRY OF LA… “We have potentially next year, the best swingman in the game, the best power forward, and the best center.” Well said, Larry. I agree with you, although Dwight Howard still deserves to be considered the top center even though I would not trade Drew for him straight up because I believe Drew will become a better overall center down the road. Even forgetting the Lakers’ superior bench, the Lakers still have a better Big 3 than the Celtics or Heat. The only way for the Heat to defeat the Lakers would be if Wade outplayed Kobe, Bosh outplayed Gasol, or Antony outplayed Bynum. Ain’t going to happen.
~
I also agree with you on the significance of the Blake signing. His addition in lieu of Farmar will solidify the Lakers championship chemistry. Throw in the motivation caused by LeBron’s “decision” and Shaq’s signing with the Celtics, Kobe’s chance to match MJ’s 6 rings and the Lakers’ chance to match Boston’s 17 titles and Phil’s Last Stand should be a grand one, climaxing in the greatest Lakers team ever.
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@FRMKT… “Bynum is the man when he's healthy... simple as that and while he's healthy and gets more "touches," he's a complete animal. IF he stays healthy, and can play without concern of being injured, i believe he's more effective for his team than d howard. Potential, potential... his is real.”
~
Outstanding post. To put Bynum’s value in perspective, all you have to do is ask if the Lakers would be favored to repeat and defeat the Heat and Celtics if they did not have Bynum at center. He is potentially the difference.
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@KOBEMVP… “I'll defer to Mitch Kupchak, Phil Jackson, Kobe Bryant (who poo-pooed the mere suggestion of Drew for Bosh) and the Lakers organization over fans like you who are under appreciative and over analytical.
~
You would think by now that EVERY Laker would appreciate and respect what Andrew Bynum brings to this team even injured. I look forward to Drew having an injury free breakout season this year, elevating the Lakers to a level above that of the Heat and Celtics. Of course, there will always be misguided or biased fans who think they know more than Jerry and Jim Buss, Mitch Kupchak, or Kobe Bryant. By the way, I do not recall Kobe ever expressing a comment about trading Drew for Bosh. Can you give me a link for that? Thx.
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TOM

Jamie Sweet -

Eddie Jones was always among the league leaders in spg. Unlike so many others, however, he got those steals without really sacrificing his position. So many players who get a lot of steals also tend to let their man score a lot of points ( going for steals instead of staying in front of them). With Eddie he was able to get his steals and also slow down the player he was guarding. I actually think Kobe learned a lot of his defensive skills from Eddie.

MM

you said "I've said this before and I'll say it again, any person who makes inappropriate comments will have their posts deleted eventually once I get to them. If they are repeat offenders, they will be banned"

dont mean to stir the pot but that statemtn is full of hypocrisy... i always had mambas back from day 1 but recently not much to defend there... whether you like it or not you have been a victim of little too much preferential treament.. i think your quick trigger banning of justalakerfan and previously mikeT are 2 examples.. cant say i agree with those decisions but just my unsolicited 2 cents... not callin you out but just sayin...

@MM… “The contrast couldn't have been any more different.
One year after Michael Jordan lambasted his critics by name during his induction to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame, former teammate Scottie Pippen thanked everyone who got him there. One year after Jordan oozed his arrogance by making it all about him and no one else, Karl Malone displayed his humility by shedding a tear after making it about everyone else. One year after Jordan boasted that players, including, himself, win championships, Lakers owner Jerry Buss modestly suggested the same thing.”
~
Outstanding article, Mark. Sometimes your great prose gets lost due to the prolific length of your articles, a trait that often leads readers to hit the scroll wheel as I well know. At any rate, I thought this was one of your best pieces since you took over for the long bypassed KamBros. No 1,000 comment threads for them.
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TOM

i would be very surprised if it was a mushy tear-jerker kind of speech.....kobe's hall of fame speech might end up being a film session breaking down how he patterned his game from the greats that preceded him.....he may talk about court angles he learned from west and baylor's footage, to jordan's favorite spots on the floor to get off his jumper, hakeem's footwork in the post, and the spacing on a fastbreak from the showtime era.....in other words, kobe was, is and always will be a basketball fiend.....

While I'm on a pit stop on our travel, just want to comment on MM from previous thread. Well, we are thankful for your tactless services in serving this blog despite one criticism, you deserve a hundred props or praises. If Microsoft could not eliminate viruses nor Google avoid being sued what more of MM of perfecting his blog, who just assumed the job as a moderator late last year. As long as you are aware of the problem & trying to do your best to cure the flaw, then we are grateful for it. We will appreciate your constant feedback on this matter, I'm sure Mamba24 will take note your due diligence and frankness.

As to what Kobe Bryant would say in his HOF speech, again this is another one of those wild speculations because we have not seen the end of his career. Historians record the events after the fact not before it happens. There is only person who deserve to have prophets before him i.e. Jesus. Anything can happen with Kobe, he could be the greatest player ever played or another scandalous enigmatic self centered player, therefore final judgment should be reserved when he finishes his career. Supposing his career ended today, I respectfully disagree with my friend Rick F said, i.e. to sugarcoat his speech for marketing purposes. He should give the frank and cordial message not based on what he could earn out from it but how the future hoopsters two or three decades would remember him through his words. Let us cite an example, I am interested with what Chick Hearn said or what Wilt Chamberlain delivered on their insights of the game during their time as it reverberates more profoundly now that they are gone than what they could have earned from it, if they hid, ditched and sugar coated the message to protect a politically-driven a sports league.

Off topic: Like for example today Ali Velchi of CNN reported that LAT would get involve in LA education by publishing the grade score testing of all public school teachers. How effective are the testing scores related to teaching? How about the parents of these students with poor upbringing engaged in cracks or single parenthood? How about the blighted location of the school, where illegal immigrants settled down or gang infested areas? Can you compare Beverly Hills from Compton or Pacoima? How about the publishing paper, LA Times, as a bankrupt institution under Zell Group of Companies? Are all your top executives qualified to handle the job or should they quit en masse for continuing the blatant mismanagement of formerly a world-renowned newspaper?

dont mean to stir the pot but that statemtn is full of hypocrisy... i always had mambas back from day 1 but recently not much to defend there... whether you like it or not you have been a victim of little too much preferential treament.. i think your quick trigger banning of justalakerfan and previously mikeT are 2 examples.. cant say i agree with those decisions but just my unsolicited 2 cents... not callin you out but just sayin...

Posted by: yellofever | August 18, 2010 at 12:52 PM
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Well I have to agree with MM yellofever. This is a blog a free place to disagree. When you begin to insult bloggers that's when MM says you crossed the line. In fact I LOVE that MM does that over the K bros who used more of a laize-faire attitude with the "just ignore them". In fact only 1 blogger I think really got banned and that was KL Beast and it took like what 3-4 months for the K Bros to ban him?

From what I remember from Mike T. he was insulting everyone who did not agree with him that the Celtics would win the 2010 Championship. I've been on a break and from what I seen with JustaLakerFan it seemed that many bloggers were very upset at his comments and the thing that led to MM ban him was a sexual attack on Wes and well I stand by that. Larry (Mamba24) as much as I love that dude if he also degenrated into name calling against JustaLakerFan I'm not sure if I could defend him and win (I would still defend him regradless).

I stand by MM. He's a tougher sheriff than the K Bros ever was.

Kobe will be introduced by Pau in Spanish and will speak in 3 languages, English, Italian, and Chinese. It will be aired live by all over the world..He will be the first global HOF.

Hi Laker Tom,

Yes, I agree people wouldn't give up Lakers for Clippers. My statement wasn't as complete as it should have been. When I said wonder how many Laker fans would become Clipper fans, I meant in addition to being a Laker fan, not to replace being a Laker fan.

Some other poster asked would they really be Clipper fans or would they be Magic fans. I think that was a great point. If Magic owned the Clips I would root for them for sure. And if they made it to a WCF showdown, I would want the Lakers to win, but if they didn't I could easily root for the Clippers.
But then, I am a very big Magic fan so that surely taints my view on this.

After Kobe retires, what if he bought the Clippers and was a co-owner with Magic? It would be tough not to want them to do well.

As for Magic talking to a Detroit group, just as he looked into getting involved with Golden State before, that doesn't bother me at all.

West joined another team and recently said he was interested in a position somewhere, Bird and Jordan to other teams after they retired.

I think people sometimes get too unrealistic with their expectations of others.
Once these players retire, they still want to have a life and be involved. Sometimes the opportunity they want is with a different franchise.

I don't think that it detracts from their legacy from when they were a player, nor should it.

Who knows what Kobe will do 5-10-15 years after he is retired. Should he join another franchise because there's an opportunity to do something he wants, I say good luck with it. It won't change what a great player he was nor will it change what a great Laker he was.

These people need to live their lives and do what's best for them.
Many fans are borderline impossible to please all the time anyway.

KB Blitz,

I was not there when Mike T was banned but knowing his history of the fellow blogger since '06, he would return an insult if you provoke him. Read what other bloggers tell him personally, they also insult him because he was formerly an ex-con. He could be a decent individual if you start your conversation in a form of a dialogue related to basketball only but when you get into personalities, then they also get a tirade from an ex con.

Why don't you try going to one of the prisons in California like in Folsom or LA city jail and talk to them about the Lakers and see if you could illicit a good and well meaning conversation. I think for his background Mike T was decent enough to hold such conversation, what we need is a little love if we really meant it or moderation if we are really kind enough to Mike T.

Kobes Hall of Fame Speech.

I expect him to walk up onto the stage,
wait for the applause to stop,
take the microphone off of its stand,
walk away from the podium,
and do this:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T6ya7ZRlrEo&annotation_id=annotation_657105&feature=iv

LT

Here's the link and the paragraph I took from the the article.

http://espn.go.com/nba/dailydime/_/page/dime-100115-16/battered-aching-kobe-stays-steady-bumpy-ride

'Bryant then proceeded to take issue with the idea that the recent report from the New York Post's Peter Vecsey about a potential Andrew Bynum-for-Chris Bosh swap will send young 'Drew into one of his funks -- "I won't let that happen, either," Kobe says -- before finally finding some humor in a question about his own future.'

Perhaps I misinterpreted this when it came down. I thought it meant that Kobe wouldn't let that deal happen, but maybe he was just talking about Drew going into a funk.

Kobe will NOT refer to himself in the third person. And will NOT talk about hating anyone not Shaq, not the Celtics, not Del Harris, no one. It will be, Phred if I may, All About The Love...the love of the game and of the legends before him that motivated him to become who he is today. Kobe will take his rightful place in the Hall of basketball greatness with honor, pride, and gratitude.

Personally, I enjoyed M.J. hall of fame speech.
The same "arrogance" he displayed during his speech:
The same "arrogance" is what made him great.
M.J.:
A killer both on and off the court.
PS:
The only non-Lakers I respect:
M.J. and Larry Bird

Hey guys. I'm glad you enjoyed this post and the subject matter.

I don't mind people disagreeing and mixing it up a little bit. But I don't want personal attacks to be going around here. It sets up an uncomfortable environment. This effort hasn't always been perfect, but I want to be fair to everyone.

MM

"Honoring the game and yourself by staying true to your essential nature."

In my opinion, the above sentence represents M.J.

M.J.'s play: he was a killer on the court.
M.J.'s hof speech: he was being a killer at the podium.
M.J. could care less about being liked on the court.
M.J. could care less about being liked during his speech.
M.J. has not stopped being the player.
M.J. was in warrior mode during his hof speech.

As a result of the above:
Many were turned off by his "arrogance" during his speech.
Personally, I loved his "arrogance" during his speech.
He was reminding everyone that he is still** the best.

And that "arrogance" is why he has:
6 NBA Finals championships
6 NBA Finals MVPs

M.J.'s will to be the best was incredible.
M.J.'s will to be the best was displayed during his speech.

M.J.'s current peer who has the will to win: Kobe.

Peace.

** Kobe will become the best with 2 more championships.

@ Triangulator,

Your passion is most appreciated, sir. Your conviction regarding your displeasure with Leslie Nielsen, err, Del is respected, as well as admired. Bravo!

As far as Nick the Quit: I'm sure Derek learned from that as well. The irony is, Nick wasn't really a point guard, yet he played one on TV. By default, he was Derek's example... on the court only, mind you. Fisher was witness to some pretty awesome displays of clutch shooting (except in Utah) and ridiculous ball handling skills from Nick. Nick's immaturity ultimately did him in, and Derek is the polar opposite.

As far as Eddie goes: I'm a firm believer that Eddie's defensive skill-set was emulated by Kobe to some extent. Kobe toyed with the high school game and its players. The NBA was a whole new world. Eddie's D and Kobe's natural instincts worked hand-in-hand, thus elevating their respective efforts and subsequent results. I was very sad to see Eddie (and Campbell) go to the Hornets, but it was addition by subtraction.

You're also correct in your view of Del. He's a terrific asst. coach, and a slightly above average head coach. However, it was management that offered the contract, as it did not fall from heaven... at least not literally. He was the best choice at that time, and the Lakers braintrust signed off on that decision. Hakuna Matata!

Lastly, I picked The Del Harris monicker for my blog handle because I knew he was a nuetral figure; neither loved, nor unloved. He was also part of a fun, albeit not entirely successful, time during which I fell in love with this game and this team all over again. Thanks for caring enough to respond.

Glenn Rice = Mitch Richmond.

DBDH!

*EDIT*

Glen Rice. Sticky "n" key.

DBDH!

One thing that people seem to overlook about Kobe Bryant is that he is a quick learner.

I'm not just talking about basketball; I'm talking about handling life as a professional athlete in the age of 24-hour media. Kobe is not above making boneheaded errors. He's stepped into quagmires a number of times, but he's canny enough to not make the same mistake twice...or make mistakes that he sees others making. Witness his silent reaction to Shaq's "diss" rap in 2008, or the way he has reacted to LeBron James joining with Dwayne Wade and Chris Bosh on the Miami Heat. I think Kobe likely took note of what Jordan did at his Hall of Fame induction ceremony last year and the sour public response that it drew, and he'll be careful not to make the same mistake that Jordan did.

Kobe is a very good man.

It's just that, he takes his job with utmost seriousness and focus. He is a workaholic.

Again, Kobe is a very very good man.

LAKERS ALL DAY!!!

"What will Kobe Bryant say in his Hall of Fame speech?"

I got a 3-peat w/o "shaqilla" and in the process, I have 3 more rings than he does and IN BUSS WE TRUST!!


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