Kobe Bryant: Too Old, Too Hurt, Too Good
Nov 2, 2010; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Lakers guard Kobe Bryant (24), left, and center Pau Gasol (16) embrace during the game against the Memphis Grizzlies at the Staples Center. The Lakers defeated the Grizzlies 124-105. Photo via Newscom

But haven’t you been paying attention? It’s Kevin Durant’s league now. If you’re going to buy stock in one player today, he’s the man. Or at least that’s the analogy certain sports stations keep pushing. The main attraction, however, is the 3 ring circus in South Beach. Sure, they played a whopping 3 minutes of basketball together in the pre-season but hey, everyone knows championships are won on paper! Chalk 2010-2015 to the dominance of the Miami Heat.

Unproven. Unaccomplished. Unjustified hype.

That is today’s NBA. A league that Kobe Bryant does not fit in with. It’s assumed he will drop off every year and a new era of superstars will take over. And while it is inevitable that that will eventually happen, this assumption is always prematurely made.

We are so eager to declare the next big thing instead of appreciating greatness in the present. Right now, Kobe has a chance to catapult himself into the ‘best of all-time’ discussion. And we’re not talking potential here. With this tested team surrounding him, Kobe has a great chance of not only tying Jordan for rings, but bypassing him and entering Robert Horry and John Havlicek territory. Obviously his championships will be valued just a bit differently.

Those are facts, not potential. He hasn’t given us any reason to doubt him. Kobe’s work ethic won’t let that happen. Much like Jordan, Kobe adjusts his game according to what areas he is lacking in. That’s what the great ones do: evolve with their bodies and simply change up their arsenal of tricks. So while the rest of the league is trying to predict the future, Kobe makes his.

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