To Kobe or not to Kobe?That is the Question
Local Fans appear to be obsessed with getting information about Kobe Bryant’s future in the NBA. Will he return to the Lakers? If so will it be this season, or will it be next year? If anyone does have the answers to these questions, they are not sharing them with us. The decision as to what he will do seems to have been left up to Bryant.
He does have a guaranteed $28 million contract for next year, so it is in his best ﬁnancial interest to not retire. However, if he cannot play and does not retire, the Lakers will have to pay him anyway. So, it might be in everyone’s best interest to just give them the money, and to be done with it. They could call that a retirement bonus, if that made him feel any better.
In my opinion, he has earned it. He has used his athletic skills to earn them hundreds of millions of dollars, and this would give them an opportunity to show their gratitude.
If Bryant does remain on the team, then his presence is an additional complication for Coach Byron Scott to deal with. While Bryant will always play as hard as he can, and do his best to win, he reserves the right to do it in his own way. This means that Coach Scott is not allowed to correct or to criticize him. If that is the case, then it will deﬁnitely cause problems with the 11 other members on the team. Most athletes, amateur or professional, are very childlike in their behavior. If one person has any special privileges, then they are likely to insist on having the same ones for themselves.
So, Scott may not be able to be as tough and as demanding as he would ordinarily be on his players, and still allow Bryant to do his own thing. This approach almost never works out. Another complication is that Bryant intimidates his own teammates. When they play with him, they want to do what Coach Scott has told them to do, but they also do not want to make Bryant angry. These are young players, and if you have noticed, they play better when Bryant is not actually with the team.
The Clippers have problems of their own. Their starting center, DeAndre Jordan, makes only 40% of his free throws. This makes him a liability to the team, especially in the latter part of the games.
The opponents will simply foul him, and then get the rebounds, when he misses. He insists that he is working very hard to do better, but that he has been unable to do so.
Fundamentally, he would like to do better, but he does understand that he does not have to. He will continue to play for the team, and to receive his salary. He does not have to get professional help with this problem on his own, and so far, the Clippers have not required him to do so. He is a talented rebounder and shot blocker, so in spite of his faults; the Clippers feel that they are better off when he is on the
The team also has to have some concerns about their star guard Chris Paul, also known as CP3. In last year’s playoff games and Monday night’s game against the Grizzlies, Paul made some errors which led to their defeat. Without any doubt, he is a great player, but he has shown a tendency to make big mistakes when the lights are brightest.