One of the most famous LeBron James quotes of all time will always be his "Not two, not three, not four, not five, not six, not seven..." statement about how many championships the Miami Heat would win when he first came to South Beach in 2010.
Now, Kobe Bryant has subtly reminded him that winning just one title doesn't really cut it. Hopefully, it will push LeBron to remain focused and look to become one of the greatest NBA players of all time.
As Bryant told Ian Thomsen of Sports Illustrated:
One championship doesn't get it, you know what I'm saying? So for me, when we won one, it was a little different because it was, like you know, Michael (Jordan) had six, Magic (Johnson) had five. So me and Shaq (O'Neal) both were like, man, we got to get some more. One ain't going to cut it.
Bryant is right. In the pantheon of great players, winning one title isn't enough. LeBron's legacy will always include the fact he is a champion now that he has won a title, and nobody can take that away from him.
But if he wants to be remembered as one of the truly elite players in NBA history with the likes of Jordan, Magic, Larry Bird, Bill Russell, Wilt Chamberlain and yes, Kobe, he'll need to keep compiling the rings.
And don't think Kobe won't remind him of that fact.
"Yeah, I mean, since the last time we were here I got two,'' said Bryant, extending the vowel the way Jordan extended his fingertips after making his last championship shot in Utah. He let the "two'' hang out there without rushing onto the next sentence. "Dirk got one. He (James) got one.''
Has Bryant reminded James of the championship score?
"Not yet,'' he said. "I will. I will.''
It's good to have players that push you, and I'm not sure anyone in the NBA has the ability to push LeBron quite like Kobe. The Black Mamba was this league's elite player until LeBron took over that distinction, has already won five titles and has a competitive streak that no one else in the NBA can match.
How many championships will LeBron James win?
In other words, when Kobe talks, LeBron should take notice. And if he has any competitive streak at all, those words should fuel him to start collecting NBA championships.
You don't win championships without being self-motivated enough to put in the extra work, spend long hours in the gym and push away distractions to stay focused. But you aren't human if you can't use the naysayers or comments like the one Kobe made to motivate yourself even further.
Kobe speaks the truth. LeBron James needs to win more than just one title to be an all-time great. He should want to win more championships than Jordan. His work isn't done.
If LeBron isn't satisfied with just one championship, I'm sure he agrees.
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