Back in 2010, after a short stint with the Boston Celtics, point guard Stephon Marbury chose to take his talents overseas. Marbury went on to became a superstar in China as one of the premier players in the CBA and is still playing for the Beijing Ducks.
Before leaving the NBA for China, Marbury played against some of the best guards in the history of the league. Marbury went head-to-head with the likes of John Stockton, Steve Nash, Gary Payton, Jason Kidd, Allen Iverson, and Michael Jordan, but when asked which players were the toughest to guard he mentioned two of the players listed above along with Los Angeles Lakers legend Kobe Bryant.
Marbury said the following about Kobe when naming the five toughest players to guard during his basketball career, via ESPN:
“To me, he’s the second-best guard after Michael Jordan. So you have to guard every move and every fake.”
Bryant drove a lot of opposing players crazy during his 20-year playing career with the Lakers. Kobe has frequently been mentioned by some of the best and brightest players of past and present as a nightmare to guard. Marbury is one of many that struggled to keep Bryant in front of him on the basketball court.
Kobe may have walked off into the sunset last April in spectacular fashion with a 60-point finale, but he’s still as relevant as ever and will likely continue to be mentioned in lists like Marbury’s.
The five-time NBA champion seems to have left his mark on every star player he’s faced in one form or another. Although pursuing another career with his playing days now behind him, Kobe’s legacy only continues to grow with stories and praise given on seemingly a days basis by his peers.