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Kobe Bryant says he would beat LeBron James in one-on-one

October 3, 2010 | 10:51 am

Lakers guard Kobe Bryant delivered the answer in a matter-of-fact tone, with his answer sparking heavy laughs. He sounded diplomatic when he said it, but the general public may find it biting. And even though his answer wasn't personal in nature, Bryant's comments will likely be interpreted as a bite toward LeBron James.

Bryant recently appeared in London to help launch the London School of Basketball, which Hoops Fix said was "a network of coaches committed to delivering coordinated basketball across London while increasing sustainable participation in the sport." And his answer to a question about playing James one on one likely will be replayed leading up to the Lakers' Christmas Day game against Miami.

"I'd win, I'd win," Bryant said matter-of-factly. "That's what I do. One on one ... that’s easy for me, you know. Playing one on one is how I grew up playing; it’s like my thing. LeBron is more like a Magic Johnson; he’s a great passer and plays an all-around game. At the core of me, I’m a one-on-one player. I'd do that in my sleep."

Interestingly, Bryant has been largely supportive of James, mentioning numerous times in public that he is glad James has made a decision that makes him happy, saying the negative reaction to "the Decision" is unjustified and even saying James had deserved the regular-season MVP award last year. But when it comes to who would win one on one, Bryant's always going to say he'll be on top, no matter whom he's up against.

Something tells me the NBA should add this as an event for the 2010 All-Star game. The Staples Center crowd would certainly dig it.

-- Mark Medina

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