Kobe Bryant is retiring at the end of this 2015-2016 NBA campaign. He has played 20 seasons in the league and deserves a spot in the NBA Hall of the Fame among basketball greats. He didn’t surpass Michael Jordan with six NBA rings. Kobe Bryant is retiring with five championship rings. Expect Kobe Bryant to be ranked with the top fifty NBA players by 2050. There’s no doubt he is one of the best basketball players who ever played the game.
Carmelo Anthony scored 62 points against the Charlotte Bobcats on January 26, breaking Kobe Bryant’s record of 61 points at Madison Square Garden. He hasn’t been much of a contributing factor against much basketball opponents because he hasn’t shown much performance in his game since the outburst. If you want to talk about basketball outbursts, look at Kevin Durant and his scoring binges. He has scored 30+ points in the last ten games, grabbed 7 rebounds, averaged 4 assists, shot 57% from the field, and has been nearly perfect from the free throw line. Lebron James has also played very good basketball games, but none outperforming Kevin Durant as of late. It will be interesting to consider who will be MVP of the league and of the NBA Finals, if the Miami Heat and the Oklahoma City Thunder meet again. Lebron James outdueled Durant in the 2012 NBA Finals. Kevin Durant will rely on his supporting cast to help him out, as he leads the team in scoring. It will be hard for Durant to manage without Russell Westbrook, as he recovers from his injury.
This is the start of the NBA season and I have yet to witness, but read about it, Paul George’s basketball brilliance. He continues to expand his perimeter game and he is on the cusp of greatness, the same as Lebron James, and both George and James are continuing to put the hurt on opposing perimeter defenders with their long-range shooting and slashing to the hoop. Houston is 4-1, because of James Harden and new Rocket Dwight Howard’s post interior defense, scoring, and rebounding. It will all depend on Howard’s ability to finish games, because he was unable to help Kobe Bryant finish late in the closing seconds of basketball games when he was with the Lakers. Cleveland is 2-2 and I am keenly interested in how Jarrett Jack mentors the young Cavs in Kyrie Irving and Dion Waiters. Teams to watch out for as November games continue: the Brooklyn Nets with their starting five of Deron Williams, Joe Johnson, Kevin Garnett, Paul Pierce, and Brook Lopez, and the Chicago Bulls and their star point guard Derrick Rose plays since his injury, and Phoenix’s Eric Bledsoe, who got off to a fast start having 18 points and 6 assists against Utah on November 1, 26 points and 14 assists against OKC on November 3, and 25 points and 5 assists against New Orleans on November 5.
“If you can have continuity, a good group, a team, so to speak, and all that that entails and keep it in a continuous manner so that it grows more or less upon itself, within itself and the knowledge and understanding continues to grow you have a pretty good understanding. You can deal with adversity and you cannot get too pumped up about success but just enjoy it and realize how fleeting it might be. But the change, change, change, change, change thing doesn’t really work. You can see that in a lot of organizations. The continuity I think breeds, it breeds trust, it breeds camaraderie, it breeds a feeling of responsibility that each member holds towards the other. The ability to be excited for each other’s success, not to develop territory and walls, but to stay participatory. To be able to discuss, to argue and come out at the end on the same page with the same passion and the same goals.” – San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich
This is what I think should be the quote of the year. The San Antonio Spurs in basketball have one of the more level-headed organizations when it comes to disciplining players and coaching them. Gregg Popovich, R.C. Buford, and Peter Holt have created a long-lasting culture that has tamed the best of what the NBA’s best basketball teams has to offer. NBA basketball teams don’t last longer than the San Antonio Spurs, because they have a staple of foundation in Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, and Manu Ginobli that has lasted longer and matured longer than the Michael Jordan-era of the Chicago Bulls in the 1990s and the Kobe Bryant and Shaquille O’Neal-led Los Angeles Lakers teams. The San Antonio Spurs have learned from experience longer and faster and are full of wisdom when it comes to winning and losing playoff games. If there’s a playoff game going on, Gregg Popovich will let you know what is up with you and what you need to do to improve. Everybody on the San Antonio Spurs are playing as a team, from the number one star player to the last player on the roster. Everyone plays as a Spurs basketball player and has a role every time they step onto the court. The Spurs adapt very well to a lot of basketball situations and because basketball coaching is situational, they know how to scout their opponents, down from their strengths to their weaknesses. The Spurs are very good at doing what they need to do to stop their opponents from winning the game. There is no team that is more together than the San Antonio Spurs.
The West wins and beats the East 143-138. Chris Paul is the game’s MVP and first L.A. Clipper to win the award! This is some news. Lebron James didn’t rule this night as Chris Paul got the award and Kobe Bryant got some last-minute defense on LBJ as Bryant’s defensive heroics ruled the end of the game.
The Lakers are slumping. Why? Nobody’s scared of these 11-14 Los Angeles Lakers. Kobe, you have to go out there and take the basketball game that you love and stick it right back to them! You did the right thing, when you scored 34 points against Philadelphia. And you won the game 111-98. When you have two seven footers like Pau Gasol and Dwight Howard on your team, you have to utilize them and see their strengths like it’s your strength. See that they ride piggy-back on your shoulders, Kobe, and see that you are leading this team to glory and to your sixth NBA title where you will be cemented in legacy for having more NBA titles than Shaquille O’Neal. This is the first two-game winning streak in a while, don’t be shocked by this. It’s December and there is still time remaining. They are just three games below .500 and need momentum now from doing this. They’ll need this win over Philadelphia to prove how great the Lakers are and this is Kobe’s team and Kobe Bryant needs to show that this is the basketball game that he loves and nobody can take that away from him.
This is really interesting. The L.A. Lakers fired Mike Brown and are looking for a top head coach in the mean time. Shortly after firing Brown, the Lakers beat the Golden State Warriors in a blow-out win 101-77. Kobe Bryant had a statement game with 27 points. The New York Knicks are 4-0 with a convincing win over Dallas 104-94. They are really hustling, these Knicks, and it starts with Carmelo Anthony. Anthony really is hustling now. His hustle, his stats, his energy, they’re all important for Anthony and for New York right now. Lebron James hit a clutch shot against Atlanta as the Heat won 95-89. Stay tuned for more NBA updates as time goes on.