The last time Mr. Bryant opened his mouth on how to improve the Lakers, "All Hell broke loose," right?
The media became so focused on Kobe and his Lakers complaints, that we hardly knew the playoffs were happening. It was "all Kobe, all the time" on the blogs, and "Oh, by the way, did you know the Spurs just beat the Cavs in the finals?"
Kobe admitted later that "it wasn't worth it." He would never play General Manager again, that his GM'ing days were behind him. His lips were closed, as he motioned with his hand like a zipper.
Thank you Kobe Bryant! This author, like many of you, loves to watch his masterful play, and has enjoyed his growth and maturity as a player. GM Kobe for me is way too stressful to handle. I don't know about you, but "ship his ass out of here" statements from a guy who "would've rather played on Pluto" is more than the Amazing NBA stuff that I bargained for.
I watch the NBA to escape stress, not to have my blood pressure go off the charts.
And so thankfully, true to his word, GM Kobe has been very quiet, until...the other night.
While on the Jimmy Kimmel Show, Kimmel asked about Lamar Odom and his status with the Lakers, and what did Kobe say? Politely defer to Mitch Kupchak, the actual GM of the Lakers? Oh Hell no! Unbelievably, GM Kobe spoke up. In fact, he got the rest of the Lakers to become "little Kobe GMs" as well, saying, no shouting, "Lamar ain't going anywhere, not if we can help it!"
As more than the average fan, we NBA aficionados, have been trained to read between the lines. We are not satisfied with simple statements from players, like, "Shaq and me have no problems." We know from experience and our special insight that you must read between the lines to get the true meaning of what the player's intent really is.
So what did Kobe, in this public display of a mob shout out, really mean to say?
That if Lamar Odom is not signed, he's walking AND he's taking the entire Lakers team with him.
It's clear as daylight what he was saying to the Lakers management. "So, Dr. Buss, if your watching this show, you better dig down deep in those silver lined pockets of yours and pay the man, or you won't have a team that could beat the Clippers' scrubs."
Now, some of you are probably thinking one of two things: "This author is SO right! GM Kobe is doing it again," while others might be thinking, "Are you kidding me? Are you nuts? He just wants to keep this Championship team together and is speaking from his heart."
Those who feel the latter may be right. These guys are like family. Who would want one of their family members let go? That just ain't right!
But, consider this as well. This Lakers team is built to compete to win NBA Championships for years to come if..... you keep it just the way it is.
Kobe, the player, knows that. GM Kobe knows that as well. This time, GM Kobe learned from the past and decided not to go it alone and turn the NBA World upside down. He brought back-ups. He showed his maturity by cleverly making his demand on the Jimmy Kimmel Show, so most people would view his GM demand as, "They were just funning!"
But Dr. Buss won't see it that way. No sir, that was no joke to him. He, now, sees clearly what us NBA aficionados, us Nostradamus-like fans, who view as " child's play," how to read between the lines, also know.
Kobe wants Lamar Odom back; and what GM Kobe wants, he usually gets.