Kobe becomes a team player



[SIZE=+2]No Fun in 1-on-1

[/SIZE] [SIZE=-1]12:17 AM PST on Wednesday, January 17, 2007

The Press-Enterprise
[/SIZE] EL SEGUNDO - The epiphany came to Kobe Bryant sometime last summer when he reflected upon his glorious season.
He reached new heights, leading the NBA in scoring at 35.4 points per game, the eighth-highest scoring average in NBA history, good for all the accolades he could have wished for.
His mostly solo act left Bryant thinking over the summer about how his teammates really hadn't grown, how the Lakers really didn't develop and how he was going to change his approach and involve his teammates more.
In past years, Bryant never backed down from a one-on-one challenge. He seemingly wanted to prove he was the best, and his way of doing that was to always be on the attack, to demand the ball.
"It just doesn't excite me anymore," Bryant said Tuesday. "I just don't get up for it. What I get up for is us playing well as a team and guys contributing -- like, I really get off on that.
"I get off on (Brian) Cook having a big game, and Smush (Parker) and Luke (Walton) and those guys. That's what excites me. I've been there, done that, so that just doesn't get me up anymore."
Bryant's scoring average is down to 27.9, still fifth best in the NBA. But he's taking fewer shots and passing more.
His shots are down from 27.1 last season to 19.7. He is averaging 5.5 assists, one more than last season.
And it's working: He's shooting a career-best 47.1 percent from the floor while the Lakers are shooting 47.7 percent, second best in the league.
"It's just a part of becoming the leader of this ballclub and understanding what it takes to win games," Bryant said. "And accepting that as a challenge as opposed to saying, 'OK, I want to be the best basketball player in the league and for people to understand that.' It wasn't about that. My focus has shifted to becoming a leader on this team and a very good leader at that."
Bryant saw what his teammates could do when afforded the opportunity in the playoffs against Phoenix. Coach Phil Jackson devised a game plan in which they would attack the Suns inside, and Lamar Odom, Kwame Brown and Walton all had solid performances.
That was a turning point for Bryant.



Yeah he's been passing the ball a lot more this season. He has noticed its been helping the team as well...


Sultan of Swat
Staff member
That's what I saying all that season, that this Lakers team good be a great team if Kobe passed to is teamates. They have Odom, Cook Brown that are capable scorers, and if Kobe would pass them the ball they would have more success then him taking all the shots. I am glad he finally realized it, and now look how good the Lakers are doing this season.


They've talked about this in Laker games many times. He can score when he wants to, but it's been his decision to start sharing the ball.

If his team's down, they'll get back up because of his scoring.. (Last year)

If the team's down, he'll still share the ball and see what the team can do without him (This year)


lakers are doing better with the new look kobe. passing really does help a team. kobe is a true leader...now all those kobe-haters can eat there own words now that kobe is passing...winning and scoring at the same time.