The Lakers have barely put their gear into the lockers at the practice facility in El Segundo and already Kobe Bryant is generating headlines.
First Kobe called the 2012-13 Lakers the most talented team he’s ever played for. Fair enough considering how thin some of those Phil Jackson coached teams were from top to bottom.
But the real showstopper was Bryant boldly declaring the Lakers as his team.
I’ve also heard rumors that space is cold and that lava is hot. Not really news for my taste. As if Bryant would say anything different or that anyone was really going to challenge him to the Purple and Gold throne this year.
Now what really should be hogging ESPN airspace like a Tim Tebow arrest saga is what Bryant said immediately after proclaiming the Lakers as his team.
“I want to make sure that Dwight knows that when I retire this is going to be his. I want to teach him everything I possibly know so this organization can ride as if I never left.”
Right, so Howard and KB24 have apparently had some behind the scenes convo about Dwight’s future plans. Last we heard Howard was still set on testing the open waters of free agency once the season ends.
Yeah, I know, this is just preseason pillow talk. I get that. What surprises me is that not only does KB24 think DH will stick around but that he’ll somehow blossom into the leader of the Lakers.
All of this remains to be seen so there’s no need to get too carried away right now. However the fact that Bryant is already placing the burned on Howard’s plate means a lot more than words can express. Obviously Andrew Bynum was never going to be that guy. But even after all of Howard’s indecisive dilemmas he created last season it says a lot that Kobe sees the makings of a quality leader in Superman II.