There was a point in time when Kobe Bryant was the only star on the Los Angeles Lakers. The Lakers were a mediocre team and a successful season would have been completed by just making a post-season appearance. In the 2005-06 season, the Lakers were looking like they were heading nowhere and Bryant discussed that team recently with the OC Register.
That roster was filled with secondary players including Kwame Brown, Smush Parker and Chris Mihm. The Lakers were rebuilding after the post-Shaquille O’Neal era and Bryant had very little options around him.
“I almost won an MVP with Smush Parker and Kwame Brown on my team,” Bryant said before Wednesday’s 93-75 exhibition loss to Portland. “I was shooting 45 times a game. What was I supposed to do? Pass it to Chris Mihm or Kwame Brown?”
The five-time NBA champion and two-time Finals MVP may be on the brink of winning even more championships, but he still resents the struggles of that season. The Lakers now have an elite center in Dwight Howard and a future Hall-of-Fame point guard in Steve Nash.
Nash will surely help makes Bryant more effective on the offensive end, and he is far better than the point guard Kobe had to share a backcourt with in 20005-06, Smush Parker.
Bryant continued, taking aim at his favorite whipping boy, Parker, calling him “the worst. He shouldn’t have been in the NBA but we were too cheap to pay for a point guard. So we let him walk on.”
Now the Lakers are perhaps the most talented team in the NBA and one of favorites to win the 2013 NBA championship. Every Lakers fan lived through the torturous seasons in the mid-2000s, but all that can be forgotten now that Los Angeles acquired some of the best players this league has to offer.