On December 5, Kevin Ding of the Orange County Register reported that Kobe Bryant had been admonished by teammate Dwight Howard for not providing help defense on multiple occasions in the L.A. Lakers' victory over the New Orleans Hornets.
Howard stated after the game, "I don’t have a problem with saying anything to anybody, and it should be that way." Okay, Dwight, but this comes from a man with a history of sounding off inappropriately about players and coaches on his own team. (By the way, where does Stan Van Gundy work these days?)
On January 4, Kobe Bryant bestowed a belated Christmas gift upon the world. He joined Twitter, proclaiming, "The antisocial has become social #mambatweets."
So what would the new social Kobe give to his fans via the microblogging site? It didn't take him long to serve up something delicious.
On January 7, just three days after Bryant set up his Twitter, Stefan Bondy of the New York Daily News reported that, according to a league source, Dwight and Kobe got into a "heated exchange" following the team's loss to the Philadelphia 76ers on New Year's Day.
Allegedly, the pair argued and Kobe referenced the criticisms of Howard being "soft." Teammates had to restrain Howard from going after him physically. Kobe was obviously upset, and when asked by reporters why the team was struggling, he replied, "Cause we’re old as s---. What do you want?"
Just hours after Bondy's article was published, Bryant tweeted out the above photo making light of the supposed confrontation, which features Kobe and Dwight squaring off like it's an MMA weigh-in and coach Mike D'Antoni recumbent on a trainer's table attempting to dissuade the fisticuffs.
Bryant wrote, "The mamba vs d12 !! It's on lol."
It's so great to see that they can laugh together and put aside their differences, but the tweeter doth protest too much, methinks. It's almost like the dreaded vote of confidence that Mike Brown received from Jim Buss just days before the Lakers axed him. Let's see, has Howard signed an extension yet?
The veracity of Bondy's report notwithstanding, the fact remains that the Lakers are reeling with a 17-24 record. They are in 12th place and 15 games out of first. Ouch.
But at least Kobe is on Twitter! While he is still learning how to properly use hashtags, he obviously knows how to publish hilariously bizarre Twitpics.