Ok, first, lets get TMC's valid comment addressed:
TMC wrote:And for that alone he shouldn't be considered a top player.
He's hurt his team enormously. They were contenders before and they aren't anymore. No player that hurts his team this much should be considered a great one, no matter how he performs on the court.
Being a top player is not based only on talent, but on doing everything possible to help your team win. And that's where Kobe fails...
You have a point, TMC. However, it is purely opinion-based. I can see how one would view it that way, but I would have to disagree. Just because Vince Carter gave up halfway through the season for the Raptors doesn't take anything away from his value to a team. I think Kobe's basically the same thing. His attitude is questionable (just like an injury-prone player's status is 'questionable'), but when he plays the way he should, he's an undeniable force. Kobe Bryant's unintentional sabatoge of the Laker's roster wasn't done out of malicious intent, either. He wasn't trying to screw LA out of being a contender; he just wanted the chance to be their hero himself. It's selfish, but he didn't harm the team on purpose. That being said, I can't take anything away from him simply for being selfish. I view Allen Iverson as a selfish player, but still respect his skills.
Now, onto migya...
migya wrote:This is just pure rambling! Really nothing but illogically trying to prove your own opinion
Well, obviously! It's stated countless times in this article; this is purely an opinion-based thread! However, it seems like you're taking your opinion as law... when, in fact, you're very incorrect on several glaring remarks. My opinion may differ from other peoples, but at least I don't advertise it as fact. The way you've been shutting down any and all of my ideas in this article shows that your mind wasn't even close to being open upon reading my list; you simply didn't give anything I said a chance. That is the mark of someone who's clearly not open to new ideas. Dismiss this article as "rambling" or "illogical" if it satisfies your need for only one opinion (yours), but I'd prefer to keep everyone's comments in regard and respond to them with factual information (such as my statistics on Shaquille O'Neal or my history on Phil Jackson's rosters). Yes, this article is opinion and the responses are opinion (the way they should be). But disagreeing simply because you feel like it (without any actual substance behind your argument) isn't going to seem logical to anybody but your friends on this forum. That's all I have to say about regarding the opinions of others (as well as your own).
migya wrote:Yes, I am saying that Kobe Bryant WASN'T as big a part of the Lakers success than Shaq and he definately didn't mean as much to the championship Laker teams as both Iverson and Dirk mean to their own teams!
Look at it this way - Kobe was the 2nd best player on the Lakers championship teams and without Shaq the Lakers, with Phil or not, would have not even come close to winning anything and would have MAYBE just made the playoffs! Take Iverson away from the 76ers and you have one of the 4 worst teams in the nba! Take Dirk away from the mavs and they would have next to no chance of making the playoffs, only way they are still a good team is if players that have the potential to play well (like Terry, Dampier, Howard, Daniels and Stackhouse) actually play that way, which they are not right now (Dirk is the difference between the mavs being a top 4 team and just a "maybe" a playoff team!
I wasn't refering to "back in the day" when the Lakers won the rings; I'm talking about right now. The Lakers are fighting for an 8th seed with Bryant at the helm. Without him, they'd be the worst team in the league. The Sixers (who are currently playoff bound) would still be fighting for the final seed in the East if Iverson wasn't in the picture. I'm also sure that without Dirk, the Mavericks (who are currently playoff contenders) would still barely make the post-season. Bryant's presence in LA seems to be the only "life and death" situation between these three.
Regardless, I think this is a pointless example either way. Dirk Nowitski is effective on one side of the floor only (on offense). If the Mavericks are down by 2 with 20 seconds left, they will never look at Dirk to make/spark a defensive play for possesion. In Iverson's case, it's a matter of me, me, and me. If teams double him up (and he can't break out of it), he feels content to shoot the ball in double coverage rather than pass it away to the open man. He's the most selfish player in the league. In my eyes, Dirk and Allen are not even in Kobe's league.
migya wrote:Lakers would get slaughtered???? You must be thinking of the early 80s 76ers team that won a championship! Korver, Dalembert, Iguodala, Salmons vs Parker, Mihm, George, Cook - Pretty evenly mathched, crap but even.
Again, I disagree. I see Iguiodala and Korver as difference-makers in this sort of game. Parker will play the Iverson role and try to be the star on offense, but is (ultimately) not skilled enough to make a big enough splash against Andre's defense. Mihm versus Dalembert is a clearly won victory for Samuel. Chris Mihm is a decent 5, but Dalembert can rebound, block shots, and score on the inside better. Lastly, it comes to Salmons versus Deavon George (aka, LA's only real advantage). The Sixers are the clear (if not obvious) choice to win the game.
migya wrote:Shaq was with the Lakers 3 years and they were not even close to the finals! Phil comes on board and they are by far the best team in the league and win 3 straight championships! Nothing more to say, he knows something!
Yes, Shaq and who? The Van Exel, Jones, and Bryant team had the best shot, but they were still plagued by O'Neal's injuries, Van Exel's sporadic shooting, and Bryant's inexperience. The year Phil Jackson arrived, LA threw together a team of experienced, still usefull, playoff tested veterans (Horace Grant, Ron Harper, Robert Horry, ect) to compliment Shaq & Kobe's raw talent. Did Jackson's coaching win the title? Certainly not. Moreso than anything, Jackson's religious affiliation as a Buddhist inspires him to calm his players all season and work out their personal problems. Perhaps there's never been a better coach at connecting with his players on a personal level to solve off-the-court problems (including the Shaq-&-Kobe drama, which is, in my opinion, the only thing that held them back all those years that you spoke of), but as far as calling for substitutions, players in the game, plays ran (yes, I'm insulting the triangle), and relationships on the court with the referees, Jackson is average at best! I will more than happily acknowledge his ability to work out the off-the-court kinks on every team he's coached, but the rest of his playbook is generic and bland.
migya wrote:Kobe won because of Shaq! You said so yourself that where Shaq is there is a big chance of a championship! Kobe struggled last season with a pretty good team (Odom, Butler, Askins etc) and this season he again can't make the Lakers a winner! Even with Phil!
Being on a championship team doesn't make you a great winner eg. Bill Wennington. Kobe was the 2nd major piece but has done nothing without the big star!
O'Neal's unbelievable value to a team is what overshadowed Bryant's value during the championship years. It's true, he had the worst season of his adult career (aka, since he's been starting) last season, but adjustment will always shake players games. His entire starting lineup (and thensome) pretty much switched on him! Shaq, Mailman, GP, Horry, and Fisher all vanished in place of players like Chris Mihm and Chucky Atkins! It's no wonder Bryant's numbers fell like a corpse; the #8 on his jersey was nothing more than a bullseye to opposing teams! It was obvious; shut down Bryant and the rest of the team is too poor to make a difference (which is why he's so highly valued in LA). This season, despite defenders clouding him left and right, Kobe's still finding ways to average 30 points a game and keep LA in the race! Talk about pulling a team by his teeth; Bryant's value to LA cannot be denied (or dismissed simply because Shaq was by his side for half the games of the season).
migya wrote:AGAIN NOT FUNNY!
Kobe would not make the 76ers a finals team, not anymore than what they are! And Iverson is better than Kobe! Iverson has done very well with so little! Kobe never pulled a team as far as Iverson has and does! Iverson took the rather untalented 76ers to the finals against Kobe's Lakers when they got their second championship! Kobe is scoring alot this season (takes a ton of shot too) but Iverson has been doing that since the beginning of his career!
Ok, migya, Iverson's better than Kobe at scoring... now what? Kobe can out-rebound him, out-defend him, more-often-than-not create better plays than him, and still finds time to score as many points as him. Yet, you call Iverson a better player? Like I said, don't accuse people of being biased without checking yourself first...
migya wrote:YES THEY DO!
Dwayne Wade is a superstar!!!! More effective than Kobe and not the ball hog! He makes his teammates better! Walker, Posey, JWill and Payton are far better than what most teams have and probably are too much which is why the Heat might fail this season - Too many great shooters! Even without Shaq, this team is a definate playoff team and would have a good chance of going far!
Dwayne Wade's chances for failure far out-weight Kobe's. Injury is so much more likely since he's so tightly pulled together (unlike the more relaxed-built Kobe). Wade is way more likely to pull or snap something. That being said, they're basically the same player (save for Kobe's a better rebounder/defender and Dwayne's a better passer), so give me Bryant (who's not as largely at risk for injury). Walker and Posey are also good additions (which would make the team a playoff team, but nothing else). Unfortunately, Jason William's value this year is largely due to the double teams he's being left open from while playing with Shaq. Williams has posted career highs in FG%, FT%, and 3-Point % this season. Subtract O'Neal (like they did for 4 weeks), and he'll struggle (like he did in those 4 weeks) back to his usual 38-40%. Gary Payton is also too far down the road to be anything more than a capable passer. His shooting touch still works (when left open), but his ability to drive is very scarred (largely in part because the ability to get past his defenders has left him). As with Williams, his game would suffer without the Big Guy on his team.
migya wrote:AND WHEN THEY GOT TO THE PLAYOFFS............ SHAQ was everything!!!! The Lakers were never a force when Shaq was injured! With him they were great, without him they struggled to win! Shaq was the Finals MVP all 3 times! That says it all!
So what you're saying in essense is that Kobe did all the grunt work to get LA to the post season (posting huge numbers, being a clutch genius, and working his ass off day in and day out) until Shaquille O'Neal's aging ankles played hard in the playoffs? Hmmm... the post season (at it's longest) can be 26 games long. The regular season is 82. Who deserves more credit: the guy who played well in 26 games or the guy who played well in 82? Not taking anything away from Shaq, but Kobe Bryant's success was an inevitable thing. One day, Kobe's jersey will hang in the Staples Center next to Magic's and Kareem's (where it belongs). He'll eventually make the Hall of Fame (also, where he belongs). Kobe Bryant is one of the best players we'll see in our lifetime. I'd prefer not to hop on the hateful wagon and slaughter him simply because he's struggling in the transitional phase of the Lakers.